What we’re reading: 9/16

table with baking ingredients

Super fruit. If you’re an Ohioan, you know the pawpaw is the official native state fruit. This wild fruit was a part of diets hundreds of years ago, contains anticancer agents and can still be found in 26 states today. The Washington Post has more.

Five-second rule. Time for a microbiology lesson: How long does it take bacteria to travel from the floor to food that’s been dropped? The Independent takes a look at the urban myth that’s prevalent in school lunchrooms and elsewhere, plus what science tells us we should do when our lunch lands on the carpet.

Food migration. Citrus fruits originated in Northern Asia, bananas have only been available in the U.S. for 150 years or so and apples were first grown in Kazakhstan. Depending on how you look at it, there aren’t a whole lot of “local foods” in the United States. Via National Geographic.

Speed eating. The length of a school’s lunch period can seriously affect student nutrition, according to a recent study. Via: The New York Times Well Blog.

Caffeine buzz. A study of pottery samples from Native Americans in the American Southwest and Mexican Northwest suggest that 1,000 years ago, caffeinated drinks made from cacao and yaupon holly were consumed communally and ritually. What’s surprising? Yaupon holly isn’t native to that region. Via NPR.

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