A recent post in Time reports that this past Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has suggested a redesign of the hot dog. Their reason?
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"In the U.S., 10,000 children ages 14 and younger visit the emergency room due to food-related choking each year, and between 66 to 77 children age 10 and younger die each year from food-related choking. According to one study cited in the report, 17% of food-related choking deaths involve hot dogs."
The article goes on to interview Dr. Gary Smith, the lead author of the policy statement, who says:
"If you were to take the best engineers in the world, and you said to them, 'Design for me the perfect plug for a child's airway,' you couldn't do better than a hot dog. Unfortunately, it's exactly the right shape of the airway, it's the right diameter--it forms a plug, completely sealing off the upper airway, right above the vocal chords."
Though I agree that this is a serious and scary problem, I'm not sure calling for the redesign of the hot dog is necessary. I think they've already done it and called it bologna. They even gave it a first name and a last name.