This fast-food taco has been compared to a 'wet envelope of cat food' — and Americans eat 554 million a year (JACK)

Jack in the Box's tacos may be "vile" and reportedly taste like cat food, but they're also crucial to the fast-food chain's business.

The fast-food chain sells 554 million tacos every year, making them the most popular menu item, reported the Wall Street Journal. However, the Journal also noted that many people who gorge themselves on Jack in the Box tacos are also disgusted by their cravings.

"I was like, 'I must have more. This is vile and amazing,'" Heather Johnson told the Journal of her first experience at Jack in the Box.

"Jack in the Box tacos aren't tacos," Mike Primavera wrote on Twitter. "They're more like a wet envelope of cat food."

"You can't look at it too long before you eat it," Primavera told the Journal. "You just kind of have to get it outside of the sleeve and into your mouth."

RELATED: Secret fast-food items you can order:

Scrolling through social media reveals that Johnson and Primavera are far from alone in their mix of love and contempt for Jack in the Box's tacos.

There are lovers (including some celebrity fans):

Tweet Embed:
https://twitter.com/mims/statuses/812115616454897664
Let me tell you one thing that has positively impacted my life since moving to STL: Jack in The Box (especially tacos). 😍 Instagram Embed:
http://instagram.com/p/cDz5XTOjGe/embed/
Width: 658px

And there are haters:

Tweet Embed:
https://twitter.com/mims/statuses/812595209003380736
#PostAnUnpopularFoodOpinion jack in the box tacos need to be banned Tweet Embed:
https://twitter.com/mims/statuses/812183870988632065
Jack in the Box tacos are disgusting and fake af for calling them tacos. If I dont eat them sober, I wont eat them high or drunk. DONT @ ME

And there's perhaps the most honest group — those who are disgusted by their love:

Tweet Embed:
https://twitter.com/mims/statuses/811488064711237632
The feeling Jack in the box tacos give me is so conflicting. Like I can't describe how I feel bc they're so awful but taste truly amazing. Tweet Embed:
https://twitter.com/mims/statuses/812475707116818432
@Gaychel22@SSFCFOTY13 Jack in the box tacos. All about a slice of cheese in a deep fried shell. Fucking gross and I love them.

Jack in the Box's tacos are a unique menu item. While most fast-food places that sell burgers, such as McDonald's and Burger King, have a fairly similar menu, Jack in the Box goes far beyond the usual burger-and-fry fare, with options such as egg rolls, stuffed jalapeños, and of course tacos.

Plus, Jack in the Box's tacos are nothing like what you'd find on the menu at other Mexican fast-food chains, like Taco Bell. Instead, the menu item distinguishes itself with American cheese and a preparation technique that involves by being dunked in the fryer, producing a handheld meal that's particularly soggy and greasy if a customer waits too long to eat.

The greasy mess is paying off for Jack in the Box. Last quarter, the company reported same-stores sales increased 2%, which Jack in the Box said beat all "major competitors in the burger category." As the most popular menu items, tacos proved crucial in Jack in the Box's mission to beat the burger business.

Click here to read the Wall Street Journal's dive into exactly what makes Jack in the Box's tacos so gross — yet so successful.

NOW WATCH: This taco tastes like an In-N-Out cheeseburger

More from Business Insider:
Online dating sites are anticipating a huge surge on New Year's Day
Sears and Kmart are closing more stores — see if your store is on the list
Struggling Sears is borrowing another $200 million from its CEO to stay afloat

SEE ALSO: Taco Bell is now testing chicken nuggets and fries — here's the verdict