This Olympic Team Accidentally Ordered 15,000 Eggs

February  7, 2018

Earlier this week, the Norwegian Olympic team received a grocery delivery appeared 15,000 eggs in tow. They were shocked, mystified, and completely and desperately overrun by eggs. At this rate, each of Norway’s 109 Olympic athletes would have to eat around 137 eggs during the course of the competition. How exactly did this happen?

The answer is actually pretty simple. The team’s chefs, who arrived in Pyeongchang, South Korea ahead of the Olympics, used a local Korean grocery delivery service to order all the foods they’d need to feed their small army of athletes. To do this, they used Google Translate where the fateful error occurred. In the process of translating, an extra zero was added on to their order, turning what was supposed to be a request for 1,500 eggs into one for 15,000.

“We received half a truckload of eggs,” said Stale Johansen, Team Norway’s chef, In a report with Aftenposten, a Norwegian newspaper. “There was no end to the delivery. Absolutely unbelievable.”

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Athletes are hungry people and require an above-average amount of calories to function at peak performance, but the exorbitant amount of eggs proved too much, even for them. The chefs ended up returning a bulk of the shipment, opting instead to keep only 1,500, as they originally intended. But not before snapping a picture:

For fun, I ran their caption through Google Translate, to test the interface for accuracy. Here’s what I got: “The OL camp ordered 1500 eggs through translating through Google Translate. But it was wrong. 15,000 was delivered to the door. We wish good luck and hope that the Norwegian golden hopes are happy - very happy - in eggs.” Hmm, not bad, but not great. I think I see how this mix-up might have happened.

Ever had Google Translate turn on you? Tell us about it in the comments.

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Valerio is a freelance food writer, editor, researcher and cook. He grew up in his parent's Italian restaurants covered in pizza flour and drinking a Shirley Temple a day. Since, he's worked as a cheesemonger in New York City and a paella instructor in Barcelona. He now lives in Berlin, Germany where he's most likely to be found eating shawarma.

1 Comment

Kayleigh February 10, 2018
Oh, boy. I work in translation for a living... trust me: Google translate will always fail you. I'm going to add this to my list of reasons not to use full machine translations :P However--137 eggs over two weeks? I feel like I could do that between eating and baking! Send them my way!