29 Apr: The Swedish Meatballs Controversy

Where are meatballs from, and why does it matter? Social media users frenziedly grappled with these very questions on 29th April, 2018, when Sweden’s official Twitter account proclaimed: “Swedish meatballs are actually based on a recipe King Charles XII brought home from Turkey in the early 18th century. Let’s stick to the facts!”

Does this tale about the Royal family bringing meatballs back from the Ottoman Empire check out? And doesn’t every culture in the world have some form of meatballs? You’d think these would be innocent questions – but they ended up overhauling Sweden’s social media strategy for good…

In this episode, Arion, Rebecca and Olly trace the origins of IKEA’s best-selling product; reveal the world-record for meatball consumption; and investigate a Finnish hack for soupy balls…

Further Reading:

• ‘Swedish Meatballs Are Actually Turkish, According to Sweden’ (TIME, 2018): https://time.com/5263690/swedish-meatballs-actually-turkish/

• ‘Sweden’s official Twitter account will no longer be run by random Swedes’ (The Verge, 2018): https://www.theverge.com/2018/9/5/17824338/sweden-twitter-account-citizens-takeover-swedish

• ‘Sweden admits Swedish meatballs are actually from Turkey’ (CBS Evening News, 2018):

#food #culture #sweden #2010s #tech #funny

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