x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

50 spoonfuls of sugar at a time for diabetes research

Plus an expensive prank in Oregon and more news you can lose.

A fast-food restaurant in Utah is offering to make a contribution to diabetes research if customers buy an 800 calorie "Mega Jug" soft drink that contains the equivalent of more than 50 spoons of sugar.

The branch of Kentucky Fried Chicken says it will give US$1 to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund every time it sells the "Meg Jug", which holds the equivalent of just under two litres of liquid.

Despite criticism in some quarters, the research fund says it will accept the donation because Type 1 diabetes, which it researches, is not caused by obesity.


Spending a pretty penny

After security cameras caught a man relieving himself into a reservoir for drinking water, authorities decided they needed to drain the entire 30 million litre lake.

The operation, which cost taxpayers in Oregon US$36,000 (Dh132,000), has been attacked by health experts who point out that the human bladder can only hold around 250 ml of fluid, which would leave a virtually untraceable amount.

However David Shaff, an administrator with the Portland Water Bureau, defended charges that he had overreacted, saying: "I think what you have to deal with here is the 'yuck' factor."


The taste of integration

Italy has produced its first halal mozzarella. Certification for the cheese, produced by tradition at Castel di Sasso near Caserta, was given by the country's Zayd Ibn Thabit Islamic Culture Association.

Halal certification is based on the production process and includes a ban on using alcohol to clean cheese-making equipment.

Abdallah Massimo Cozzolino, an imam at Naples Mosque, called the move "a step forward for integration too".


Darwin's long journey ends

More than a century after it was checked out, an overdue book has been returned to Camden Library in Sydney, Australia.

The first edition of Charles Darwin's Insectivorous Plants had a stamp showing it was last taken out on January 30, 1899.

It is understood that the book had been given away several times, ending up in the collection of the University of Sydney Farms, which returned it.

Library staff have calculated the late fine for the book at A$35,000 (Dh136,000) but say, fortuitously, they have an amnesty this month, so that there will be nothing to pay.


Battling the builders

After 17 years and at a cost of US$4.5 billion, the world's biggest renovation project has been completed.

The Pentagon renovation has taken so long that some of the first work is already outdated and is being upgraded.

Contractors explain that one reason the project has taken so long is that the building's 20,000 staff had to continue working normally.

Damage from the impact of a passenger jet during the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack also had to be repaired.

The headquarters of America's armed forces in Washington, DC occupies 29 acres and is 603,000 square metres.

The Pentagon was built during the Second World War. It was completed in 17 months and cost US$32 million.