Snip from news story:
LG Electronics, the world's leading air conditioner maker, said on Thursday that it will start selling air conditioners that prevent avian influenza with a special filter coated with a substance extracted from a fermented kimchi. The new air conditioners target Southeast Asian countries affected by bird flu and will be marketed this year. The new products, nicknamed "Anti-A.I. Aircon," have a filter covered with an anti-bacterial substance extracted from kimchi, South Korea's spicy fermented cabbage dish, the company said in a press conference.
Reader comment: Curt Hibbs says,
Isn't the bird flu a virus? If so, an anti-bacterial agent will have no effect whatsoever!
Reader comment: DongWon Song says,
LG is actually exploiting a popular belief that kimchi cures the bird flu. Snip from a wapo article: "given the work of Kang Sa-Ouk of Seoul National University, who took 13 chickens infected with avian flu virus and a couple of other diseases, fed them kimchi juice and found that 11 of the birds recovered." This report plus internets plus Korean nationalism/entreprenurial instincts plus widespread fear and superstition and you get kimchi-air. I grew up on the stuff and it's beyond me why anyone would want to breathe this stuff on a daily basis.
Reader comment: Down by the lake eating gruffalo cake says,
Anti-bacterial agents won't affect H5N1, but a study was recently published in which infected chickens were fed kimchi – 11 out of 13 of the chickens showed improvement. Link. Not that one study is overwhelmingly convincing.
Reader comment: Dan in Seoul says,
For living in an amazingly technologically advanced culture, (The UN refers to it as "The most wired nation in the world."), they will sometimes laugh at their own almost-unanimously-held beliefs that completely contradict science. For instance, Kim-Chi has not only been "proven" by Seoul National University, (epicenter of the recent cloning fabrication scandals), to be effective against bird-flu… But has also been touted to prevent: cancer, mad-cow disease, SARS, tooth-decay, the common cold, and all forms of the flu. Keep in mind, this is also the home of "fan-death": Link. Another "proven" theory that claims rooms with no open windows or doors can kill their occupants–if they fall asleep with a fan running.