Why One Of Joe Redington's Dogs Was Named "Tang."

  Ray Genet advertised Hot Tang. (Photo, Journal)  A laskans Have Always Struggled With Finding Easily Transported Foods    Tang, a sugary, ...


Vitamin C replacement in rural Alaska.
Ray Genet advertised Hot Tang. (Photo, Journal) 

Alaskans Have Always Struggled With Finding Easily Transported Foods  

Tang, a sugary,
orange juice-flavored drink powder, was very popular all over rural Alaska during the 1970s. Mixed with water, Tang provided 100% of the government-recommended amount of Vitamin C. It was pioneered as a beverage on manned space shuttles. In Alaska, where fruits were hard to import and to carry crosscountry without freezing, Tang became a common solution to the problem of providing a source of Vitamin C to children. 

The lack of Vitamin C in rural Alaska was a serious concern, and local people's interest in using Tang grew from the Gold Rush, when miners -- unaware of the need to pick and preserve berries during the summer months -- died of scurvy, a gruesome Vitamin C deficiency disease. 

In the 1970s, almost 100 years after the Gold Rush, Alaskans were encouraged to drink their Tang heated up. 

Ray Genet, shown here, was a well-known Talkeetna mountaineer. 

He and an equally famed dog musher, Joe Redington, Sr. (known today as "The Father of The Iditarod") both promoted Hot Tang throughout the state of Alaska. Redington even went so far as to name one of his sled dogs "Tang."

Joe Redington on the Iditarod, drinking Hot Tang.  (Anchorage Museum Facebook) 



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