U.S. loves hot dogs, but what's in them?

June 28, 2012 at 7:35 AM
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BRIDGEWATER, N.J., June 28 (UPI) -- An estimated 150 million wieners are eaten on July 4th but 77 percent of U.S. adults say they are concerned about what's in them, a survey indicated.

The survey, sponsored by Applegate, a producer of organic and natural meats, found despite consumers' hunger for hot dogs, 74 percent said most are of "low quality."

Eighty-one percent of those who consume hot dogs said they would rather purchase franks with a short ingredient statement that listed beef, water, sea salt and spices versus one with items like sodium phosphate and sodium nitrite.

Additionally, 73 percent of respondents said they thought it was important for hot dogs to be made from animals that were not administered antibiotics or hormones.

Mustard was the top topping, followed by ketchup, onions and relish. The topping used least was tomatoes.

The survey revealed some regional favorites for dressing a dog.

For Southerners, chili edged out relish and onions, and came in just behind mustard and ketchup.

Midwesterners like pickles on their hot dogs more than any other region of the country, but in the West they like cheese, and in the Northeast they like sauerkraut.

Ninety-five percent said grilled hot dogs were delicious while only 9 percent said they never buy hot dogs.

The survey of 1,045 U.S. adults, conducted by Toluna Omnibus June 8-12 had a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

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