It's not safe to eat Starburst wrappers. Although Starburst wrappers aren't harmful in small quantities, you should avoid eating them. They're not designed for consumption and could pose health risks if consumed in large amounts.
Many people enjoy eating Starbursts without removing the wrappers for the sake of convenience. But should you accidentally eat one, what are the implications?
Read on to see why some people eat Starburst wrappers and what you should be aware of.
Why Do People Eat Starburst Wrappers?
Starbursts are a beloved candy produced by the Wrigley Company. This soft taffy treat was introduced in 1960 and has become an iconic brand in America, popular worldwide.
The candy used to be sold in bars, consisting of individually wrapped Starburst pieces. Most people unwrap the candy before eating, but some prefer to eat it with the wrapper on to save time. So, why are Starburst wrappers even considered edible by some?
Unlike other brands that use foil or plastic, Starbursts come in a wax-coated paper specifically designed to provide an airtight seal between the candy and its wrapper. This packaging method has been in use since the candy's inception. The paper may give the impression that it's edible, but it's important to note that the company neither promotes nor advises this practice.
Few people eat Starbursts in their wrappers, and there have been no significant complaints related to this behavior. This might be why the company hasn't addressed the issue.
Are Starburst Wrappers Safe?
Determining the safety of Starburst wrappers is challenging due to limited available information. Since there are few reported instances of wrapper consumption, the company is unlikely to disclose the wrappers' ingredients. Unless a social media trend prompts an official statement from the company, it's best to err on the side of caution and not eat the wrapper.
Risks of Eating Starburst Wrappers
If you're someone who occasionally eats Starbursts with the wrapper on, you should be aware of some potential risks:
Ink on the Packaging
Starburst wrappers aren't just paper; they're also printed with ink. Although manufacturers typically use food-safe inks for packaging that directly contacts food, the logo on Starburst wrappers is on the exterior, making it uncertain whether the ink is safe for consumption.
Concentrated Dye in Paper Wrappers
Starburst wrappers are known for their vibrant colors, which correspond to the candy's flavors. There's no public information about the type of dye used, making it a potential health concern.
Potential Digestive Issues
Starburst wrappers may be coated with wax and contain other elements not apparent at first glance. They may pass through your digestive system largely unchanged, posing a risk for blockages. Additionally, the paper's fibrous nature may trigger an immune response.
What To Do If You Accidentally Eat a Wrapper?
If you've accidentally consumed a wrapper, don't panic and do not induce vomiting unless advised by a medical professional. One or two wrappers are unlikely to cause severe health issues for most people. However, if you suspect complications, consult a healthcare provider immediately.
Parents should exercise caution when giving Starbursts to children, as the wrappers can pose a choking hazard.
Are Starburst Wrappers Made of Rice-Based Paper?
No, Starburst wrappers are made from wax-coated paper, not rice paper. Edible rice paper is typically used in certain Japanese sweets and is clearly labeled as such.
What Can You Do with Starburst Wrappers?
If you enjoy collecting candy wrappers, consider using them for arts and crafts. There's a community of people who recycle Starburst and other candy wrappers to create origami, jewelry, and other fun items.