What’s That Funny Taste?

The never-ending quest for fake sugar.

Just as diet soda’s multibillion-dollar industry stems from the unassuming Russian Jewish émigré Hyman Kirsch, so the history of artificial sweeteners is an immigrant story, one that begins in a Johns Hopkins University laboratory in 1879. Constantine Fahlberg, a “well-built, handsome, German-American,” according to an article Scientific American published years later, was working there examining the properties of coal tar. Quite by accident, he stumbled upon a chemical that would forever sweeten the course of history. Read more »