Proceedings got off to an inauspicious start when the New Zealand representative joked that Belgium's entry in the dairy category ­ a cheese branded Nazareth' ­ should be called Cheeses of Nazareth'. His little jape went down like a lead balloon despite the best efforts of the scrambling interpreters to spare his blushes. Things got little better as the only Japanese journalist present, delivering his country's product presentations in pidgin English, explained that the latest drinks craze from the land of the rising sun ­ vodka and soda in a can ­ had added Jews' (juice). A hapless Hungarian hack then provided some light relief as he spectacularly entangled himself in his spectacles, translation earpiece and microphone before a Portuguese-speaking attendee pointed out that New Zealand's entry in the best foodservice' category ­ a range of cooking sauces labelled Piranha' ­ translated into prostitute' in his native tongue. However, last laugh went to the delegate from Poland who asked after the health of our editor designate, Mrs' Julian Hunt. "Please say hello to her for me," the Polish lady said before I pointed out the error. Unabashed, she said: "Oh, I am sorry, it's just that I always thought Julian was a girl's name." Just in case gardening leave' is now beckoning, I'd like to thank loyal readers for their support. {{COUNTERPOINT }}

Topics