30 Helpings Of Chicken And Rice

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  1. Chickens have been domesticated for at least 4,000 years; the modern chickens are all descendants of the red jungle fowl of India and Southeast Asia.
  1.  Rice has been produced in what is now the U.S. for more than 300 years.
  1. Only about one chicken out of ten has any detectable salmonella on it, and it’s a very low level, according to USDA stats.
  1. The main rice-producing states are Arkansas (no. 1), California, Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi, and Missouri.
  1. More than half of all chicken orders in restaurants are for fried chicken.
  1. The world’s top rice-exporting countries (2002) are Thailand, India, the U.S., Vietnam, and it’s a tie with Burma and China.
  1. The average American eats over 80 pounds of chicken each year.
  1. About 15,000 people in the U.S. produce rice.
  1. There’s an occupation called chicken sexer. They hold each chick by hand up to a 300 watt bulb to determine if it’s male or female (the females are kept for egg laying). A sexer typically examines 1,000 chicks per hour, 80,000 a day, with 99% accuracy.
  1. More than 90% of the rice consumed in the U.S. is grown in the U.S.
  1. U.S. rice is in high demand around the world.
  1. Winter-flooded rice fields provide important habitat for migratory waterfowl and other species.
  1. The U.S. is one of the largest exporters of rice (about 14%).
  1. The top three world markets for U.S. rice (2001) are Central America, Mexico and Japan.
  1. In early Roman times, grains of wheat were tossed at the bride, because it was wheat, not rice, that symbolized fertility. Young girls scrambled for the wheat grains that fell off the bride, similar to today’s bouquet tossing. Under Queen Elizabeth’s reign, wheat tossing stopped; the grain was baked into small cakes, which guests crumbled and tossed over the bride’s head. Later in time, a large wheat cake was baked and eaten, not tossed. This left wedding guests empty-handed (And the wheat cakes were expensive!). The alternate choice was cheap, clean, white rice; a new and enduring tradition was born.
  1. The average hen lays 255 eggs per year.
  1. Most of the birds raised for meat in America today are from the Cornish (a British breed) and the White Rock (a New England breed).
  1. Gainsville, Georgia  is the chicken capital of the world; It’s against the law to eat chicken with a fork there.
  1. A chicken’s skin color results from the type of feed it’s fed. Color preferences vary in different parts of the U.S., so growers will use the type of feed to get the desired color.
  1. If you ever come across a green chicken liver, DO NOT EAT IT! The color’s due to bile retention (Yechh!). You CAN eat that same chicken meat, however. But would you want to after seeing that green chicken liver?
  1. South Carolina was the first state to produce rice.
  1. Rice has no cholesterol, fat or sodium.
  1. Wild rice is actually a grain.
  1. On August 20, 1991, PresidentGeorge H. Bush (the first one and the father of George W.) proclaimed September as National Rice Month. Sept. is also National Chicken Month.
  1. Rice grows once a year.
  1. Beijing, China has the world’s largest Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant.
  1. Some breeds of chickens can actually lay eggs in shades of green and blue (The Ameraucana and the Araucana, depending on the breed and ancestry).
  1. Colonel Sanders was the second most recognized public figure in the world in 1979.
  1. Chimneys used to be cleaned by dropping live chickens down them.
  1. The closest living relative of the t-rex is the chicken (Amazing!). Kind of makes you look at a chicken with new respect, doesn’t it?
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