Fascinating Food Facts from Science Kids Website NZ

Food Facts

Enjoy these fun food facts for kids. Learn a range of interesting facts about food and nutrition, topics that play an important role in everyone’s lives. What foods are popular around the world? Is it common to have a food allergy? What is a vegan? Find out the answers to these questions and much more.



  • McDonald’s fast food chains employ over 1.5 million people around the world. More fast food facts.

  • Different parts of the world have their own local cuisine. The diets and general food habits of various cultures depend on social, religious, economic and safety factors as well as the availability of different foods.

  • Examples of food and cuisine that are popular or famous in certain areas of the world include hummus in the Middle East, apple pie in the USA, raw fish in Japan, cheese in France, roast meat and vegetables in England, curry in India and tortillas in Mexico.
  • There are around 2000 different plant types that humans use to cultivate food.
  • Examples of popular vegetables include lettuce, carrots, asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli, spinach, potatoes and onions.
  • The sweet potato is a root vegetable and is not closely related to the potato. More potato facts.
  • Cutting onions releases a gas which causes a stinging sensation when it comes into contact with your eyes. Your body produces tears to dilute the irritant and remove it from your eyes.
  • Pumpkins are usually labelled as vegetables but they contain seeds and are technically fruit. More pumpkin facts.
  • China is the largest producer of garlic, producing over 10 million tons in 2008 and accounting for over 75% of world output.
  • Examples of popular fruits include apples, oranges, pears, strawberries, peaches, bananas, apricots and grapes.
  • Technically speaking, strawberries aren’t even berries! Read our strawberry facts to learn more.
  • The average apple contains around 130 calories. More apple facts.
  • India is the world’s largest producer of bananas, producing nearly 22 million tons in 2007. More banana facts.
  • Humans use many different methods for gathering food which include farming, hunting, gardening, foraging and fishing.
  • Humans eat meat from a number of different animals, common examples include meat from chickens, cows, sheep and pigs. Other food products that come from animals include milk, eggs and honey.
  • Although humans are omnivores (eating both plants and animals), many people choose not to eat meat and fish, they are known as vegetarians. Those who don’t eat or use any products made from animals (including eggs, dairy products and honey) are known as vegans.
  • Food for human consumption is typically made from plants and animals but we also eat other products such as fermented foods and fungus (mushrooms, truffles etc).
  • Cooking is an important part of food preparation that involves applying heat. In most cases this transforms the chemical make up of food, altering its texture, flavor, nutritional properties and appearance.
  • Types of equipment used in the cooking process include ovens, microwaves, toasters, grills, pots and frying pans.
  • Various cooking methods include boiling, simmering, steaming, sautéing, pan frying and deep-frying.
  • Around 70 million people suffer from food poisoning every year with around 7 million of these cases being fatal. Careful food storage, temperature control and preparation is necessary to avoid potentially dangerous bacteria, toxins and viruses.
  • Around 8% of children and 2% of adults have some kind of food allergy, this occurs when the body’s immune system incorrectly assumes a certain food protein is harmful and attacks it. Common examples of food allergies include reactions to peanuts, gluten and shellfish.




10 Interesting facts about Anzac Day


Every year, on the 25th of April, Australians are given the opportunity to pause, reflect and remember the incredibly brave ANZAC soldiers who lost their lives, or who were wounded, at Gallipoli.

To help commemorate, we’ve assembled these 10 facts that you may not know about Anzac Day:

  1. Originally, the term ‘ANZAC’ was used to mean any soldier who was a member of the army corps that fought at Gallipoli. While typically thought of as just Australian and New Zealand nationals, the ANZACs included officers from India, Ceylon, the Pacific Islands, England and Ireland. However, the term has subsequently been broadened to mean any Australian or New Zealander who fought or served in the First World War.
  2. A soldier named Alec Campbell was the last surviving ANZAC. He died on 16 May, 2002.
  3. The most significant time to remember the ANZACs is at dawn, as this is when the original Gallipoli landing occurred. The dawn service was first started by returned soldiers in the 1920s and originally, dawn services were only attended by veterans. Today, anyone can attend a service.
  4. One of the key reasons for the failure of the Gallipoli offensive was the fact that the boats carrying the Australian and New Zealand soldiers landed at the wrong spot. Instead of finding a flat beach, they faced steep cliffs, and constant barrages of fire and shelling from the Turkish soldiers.
  5. While the battle itself was a crushing defeat, the Australian and New Zealand soldiers were relentless and displayed incredible courage and endurance, even despite the most horrible of circumstances. This is how the ANZAC legend was born.
  6. The Gallipoli battle itself ended in a stalemate, when the ANZACs retreated after eight months of battle.
  7. The ANZAC spirit is wonderfully represented by a brave man – Private John Simpson Kirkpatrick. He was a stretcher bearer in the Australian Army Medical Corps, and spent his nights and days rescuing injured men from the battle lines in Monash Valley. He transported them back to the safety of ANZAC cove on his donkey. He is thought to have rescued over 300 wounded soldiers.
  8. Another man who epitomised the ANZAC spirit was Charles Billyard-Leake. In 1914, he was living in a large manor in the UK – which he turned into a hospital for ANZAC soldiers. During the war, and for a while afterwards, over 50,000 Australians stayed at this Harefield Hospital.
  9. The Last Post was typically played during war to tell soldiers the day’s fighting had finished. At memorial services, it symbolises that the duty of the dead has finished, and they can rest in peace.
  10. ANZAC biscuits were believed to have made an appearance during the Gallipoli offensive. Made of oats, sugar, flour, coconut, butter and golden syrup, they were hard and long-lasting, and were ideal for troops in the trenches. They were apparently eaten instead of bread.

Fascinating Easter Fact #2

special eggIn 2007, an egg covered in diamonds (pictured) sold for almost £9 million (about 18 million Australian Dollars). The egg is very special because, every hour, a cockerel made of jewels pops up from the top of the egg, flaps its wings four times, nods its head three times and makes a crowing noise!


Fun and Fascinating facts about Christmas



Christmas trees are also known as the Yule-tree.

  • Christmas trees are evergreen trees, usually either a fir tree, pine tree or spruce tree.
  • It is believed that decorating Christmas trees originated in 16th century Germany when Christians would bring decorated trees into their homes.
  • Some people say the Christmas season officially begins when Santa arrives at the end of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.
  • Did you ever wonder where X-Mas came from? X means Christ in Greek so to shorten the word Christmas we sometimes use X-Mas.
  • In 1836 Alabama became the first state in the US to declare Christmas a legal holiday.
  • Oklahoma became the last state to declare Christmas a legal holiday in 1907.
  • In June of 1970 Christmas became a federal holiday in the US.
  • Christmas trees were first decorated with foods such as apples, nuts and dates.
  • In the  18th century Christmas trees began being decorated with candles.
  • Electric Christmas tree lights were first used in 1895.
  • Did you know that giving presents were once banned by the Catholic Church.  It was believed that gift giving was connected to paganism.
  • If you received all the gifts from the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” you would have 364 presents.
  • Do you know why we say the Twelve Days of Christmas?  It is believed that it took the 3 kings 12 days to find baby Jesus.
  • The song Jingle Bells was written by James Pierpont in 1857.  It was originally called “One Horse Open Sleigh” and was made for Thanksgiving.
  • Many years ago in England a traditional Christmas dinner included a pig head served with mustard.
  • The tradition of naughty children getting a lump of coal in their stocking comes from Italy.
  • Did you know that tinsel was once made of real silver! It was invented in Germany in 1610.
  • There are two islands named Christmas.  Christmas Island (formerly Kiritimati) in the Pacific Ocean and Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean.
  • The tallest Christmas tree ever displayed was in Seattle Washington in 1950.  The Christmas tree was 221 feet tall!
  • It is said that candy canes were invented by a candy maker in Indiana.  He wanted to use them to spread the name Jesus around the world.
  • Santa Claus is also known as St. Nicholas, Father Christmas, Grandfather Frost and Kris Kringle. for more Santa Claus Facts!
  • Santa is believed to bring gifts to good girls and boys on the night before Christmas (December 24th).
  • There are 3 towns in the Us that are named Santa Claus. One in Georgia, one in Arizona and one in Indiana.
  • Santa Claus 8 eight reindeer are named: Comet, Cupid, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Donder Blitzen.

10 random facts about Lewis Carroll

1. Carroll suffered from chronic migraines, and epilepsy, stammering, partial deafness, and ADHD.

2. He wrote 11 books on mathematics, and 12 works of literary fiction.

3. Carroll had his productivity down to a science: he could write 20 words a minute, a page of 150 words in seven and a half minutes, and 12 pages in two and a half hours.

4. Despite being a mathematician, Carroll didn’t keep a fine balance of his bank account. He wasn’t much concerned with money and would often overdraft, sometimes as much as the modern-day equivalent of £7,500, though he would pay it back promptly on payday.

5. He was a big letter writer, sometimes corresponding upwards of 2,000 times in one year, and he would sometimes write backwards, forcing the reader to hold the letter to a mirror to decipher.

British Library

6. Carroll first told the story of Alice to the Liddell girls on July 4, 1862, while Independence Day was being celebrated across the pond.

7. The Cheshire cat was inspired by cheese molds from the Cheshire county in England, a dairy-rich area, where “grinning like a Cheshire cat” was a popular phrase, possibly because cats would have been so happy to live in a land of abundant dairy farms. Cheesemakers in the area molded the cheese with a cat’s grinning face, and sliced from the back, so that the cat would slowly disappear and the last part consumed was the head.

Photo: Graeme Chuchard. Click to see a larger version

8. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland has been translated into more than 70 languages.

9. There’s a white rabbit and Alice holding a flamingo immortalized in stained glass in the Christ Church College at Oxford, where Carroll spent most of his life.

10. Even after all the success of Alice, the only time Carroll traveled abroad was in 1867 on a trip to Russia. On the way back he made stops in Poland, Germany, Belgium, and France.

Sources: Fun Trivia: Lewis Carroll; Shmoop: Lewis Carroll Trivia; NYTimes.com; Wikipedia, Lewis Carroll, and the Cheshire Cat; and “Taking account of Carroll.”

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Also on PW

10 facts about Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl at work
  1. He was born on 13 September 1916, in Llandaff, Cardiff. His parents were Norwegian.
  2. He did not start writing for children until he had children of his own.
  3. He wrote all of his children’s stories in a small hut at the bottom of his garden.
  4. He was a Hurricane fighter pilot during World War II.
  5. He had two steel hips and six operations on his spine.
  6. He wrote the screenplays for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the Bond movie You Only Live Twice.
  7. He originally wrote short stories for adults which were later published as Tales of the Unexpected.
  8. He loved chocolate, but not chocolate cake or chocolate ice cream.
  9. He always wrote in pencil on yellow paper.
  10. He died on 23 November 1990 and is buried in the churchyard of St Peter and St Paul’s Church, Great Missenden.