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    40 Random Facts That Will Change The Way You Eat Food

    Food history is so weird.

    1. Chocolate milk was invented in Jamaica.

    2. Before 2013, the biggest buyer of kale was Pizza Hut. They used the kale as a garnish for their salad bars.

    3. Some Canadian dude invented the Hawaiian pizza.

    4. Pepperoni was invented by Americans.

    5. The most shoplifted food in the world is cheese.

    6. Sylvestor Graham invented Graham crackers to help suppress sexual desire.

    7. It's estimated that the New York Harbor once was home to half of the world's oyster supply.

    8. At the time, Ellis Island and Liberty Island were known as Little Oyster and Big Oyster, respectively, because of that.

    Hulton Archive

    9. There are 19 billion chickens on Earth.

    10. That means chickens outnumber humans 3:1.

    11. China has the most pigs in the world. They have so many that they have more than the next 43 countries' pig populations COMBINED.

    Hulton Archive / Stringer

    12. A janitor at the Frito-Lay plant invented Flamin' Hot Cheetos.

    13. An 11-year-old invented the popsicle when he left a stick in some soda water, left it on the back porch at night, and found it was frozen in the morning.

    Imeh Akpanudosen / Getty Images

    Richard Montanez, the inventor of Flamin' Hot Cheetos, is now an executive at PepsiCo.

    14. The technology used for microwaves was created during WWII to track Nazi war planes.

    15. The people who built the Egyptian pyramids were paid in bread and beer.

    16. At the turn of the 20th century, lobsters were considered "garbage food."

    Railroads changed that when they started offering it as a fancy meal on luxury transcontinental trips.

    17. One of the original owners of Domino's Pizza sold his share of Domino's for a used Volkswagen Beetle. Today his portion of the company would be worth about a billion dollars.

    18. The guy from Tyson's chicken, Don Tyson, tried to win over McDonald's for 14 years to put more chicken on the menu. They finally did.

    Hulton Archive / Stringer

    19. Salt may be responsible for the Americans' defeat of the British in the Revolutionary War. When the war first started, the British stopped importing goods into the states. Consequently, settlers' supply of cod was rotting. So, they built a saltworks along the coast of Cap Cod. That worked, settlers got their cod, and they eventually won the war.

    20. The ice cream sundae was invented in the late 1800s as a way to get around a law that prevented the sale of ice cream sodas on Sundays.

    21. The first written recipe found in the world was from Mesopotamia and it was for beer.

    22. Baby carrots are just large carrots whittled down into miniature versions. They were invented when a farmer got sick of throwing away his less attractive carrots.

    23. Before modern refrigeration, people put LIVE FROGS in their milk to help preserve it.

    24. Honey doesn't go bad.

    25. Astronauts eat tortillas instead of bread in space because the bread crumbs can be problematic.

    26. In Japan, it has become wildly popular and a "tradition" to eat KFC on Christmas.

    27. Europeans basically don't eat peanut butter. They eat about less than a tablespoon a year.

    28. In the 1800s, they fed lobster to prisoners and it was considered cruel and equivalent to eating rats.

    29. Ruth Graves Wakefield, the inventor of the chocolate chip cookie, sold her recipe to Nestle and in turn received a lifetime supply of chocolate.

    30. Ninety-six percent of U.S. households have ketchup.

    31. That's more households than those that have salt and pepper.


    32. The man who invented Pringles was buried in a Pringles can.

    33. One of the founders of Ben & Jerry's can't really smell anything, which is the reason why their ice cream is so rich. He suffered from a condition called anosmia.

    34. SPAM is short for spiced ham.

    35. Technically, white chocolate isn't actually chocolate.

    Scott Gries / Getty Images

    Ben Cohen, one of the founders of Ben & Jerry's, couldn't really smell.

    36. Doritos were invented at Disneyland.

    37. When the inventor of Doritos died, his friends and family tossed Doritos onto his casket.

    38. In 1943, sliced bread was briefly banned.

    39. Cheddar cheese is sometimes orange because it's dyed that way.

    40. Orbit gum began production during WWII when Wrigley sent all of its Juicy Fruit gum to soldiers overseas. As a result, Wrigley started selling Orbit in the U.S. The gum was discontinued after the war but brought back 30 years later in the '70s.

    All facts, if not specified, are from the National Geographic show EAT: The Story Of Food. It's a 6 part mini-series premiering Friday November 21 at 9 p.m. on the National Geographic Channel.

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