Catching up on some of the food stories of the year so far:

Core, what a contest

American attempts to export apples to Japan ran into problems with the oriental way of eating. In Japan, apples are washed, peeled, cored and cut into slices before serving. Biting into them is simply not done. The Americans, accordingly, organised an apple-munching contest in Tokyo in January. The winner, however, said she preferred the bigger and sweeter Japanese apples to small American ones.

Earning his bread

A scientist at Aston University has shown that the laws of physics make toast fall more often on its buttered side.

Chocolate standards

One hundred thousand Swiss chocolate-lovers have called for "a plebiscite for preserving the Swiss chocolate quality", following a change in the law that allowed, from 1 July, up to five per cent vegetable oils in a chocolate recipe that formerly insisted on pure cocoa butter.

British bean breakthrough

Experts in Cambridge have been given the credit for developing the first British baked bean. Navy beans - the best raw material - have until now proved impossible to grow in Britain, but the development of new varieties has led to the promise of thousands of tins of British baked beans, in Union Jack labels, on supermarket shelves this autumn.

Grapefruit is good for you

Researchers in Miami have shown that grapefruit juice can greatly increase the potency of an anti-rejection drug.

So is chewing gum...

Researchers in Alabama have shown that sugar-free chewing gum can clear gastric acids and prevent heartburn.

Anyone importing chewing gum into Singapore is liable to a fine (on a first offence) of around pounds 4,000, and a year in jail. The ban was renewed this year after first being imposed in 1992 to keep subway trains from being delayed by wads of gum stuck on the doors which prevented them from functioning properly.

Da Vinci's Last Burger

After complaints from the public, a Swedish fast-food chain cancelled an advertising campaign which used a detail from Leonardo da Vinci's fresco The Last Supper. The advert showed the face and chest of Jesus over the slogan "Number One Meal". The group's director said: "Our next campaign will be more product-orientated." The Last Supper campaign has cost a third of their annual budget.

Inexplicable bananas

A lorry-load of bananas was destroyed by two unexplained explosions while being driven on the A3 in Surrey in June. "I never knew that bananas could spontaneously combust," said a spokeswoman for Surrey Fire Brigade.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Marketing Manager - Leicestershire - £35,000

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (CIM, B2B, MS Offi...

Marketing Executive (B2B and B2C) - Rugby, Warwickshire

£22000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful organisation wit...

SEN Coordinator + Teacher (SENCO)

£1 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Job Purpose To work closely with the he...

Research Manager - Quantitative/Qualitative

£32000 - £42000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Piper Ryan Randall leads a pro-Scottish independence rally in the suburbs of Edinburgh  

i Editor's Letter: Britain survives, but change is afoot

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
Some believe that David Cameron is to blame for allowing Alex Salmond a referendum  

Scottish referendum: So how about the English now being given a chance to split from England?

Mark Steel
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam