Although its name strongly suggests a New Zealand origin, the kiwifruit is in fact, native to China's Yangtze Valley. Until midway through the 20th century, the fruit was known as Chinese gooseberry. Once a commercial industry was developed in New Zealand, fruit growers apparently decided that the furry egg-shaped fruit bore a symbolic resemblance to their native flightless bird, the kiwi. Here was a fruit to call their own; and flog to the rest of the world, and so the Chinese gooseberry was reborn as the kiwifruit.
If there is an irony in this story, this is it: China now imports quite a lot of kiwifruit from New Zealand.
Why Christian Missionaries were Known as 'Eaters of Vegetables.'
So strong was the tradition of Buddhist proselytising in China that by the time their Christian colleagues arrived in the mid-sixteenth century, locals referred to the newcomers as 'eaters of vegetables', because they assumed that all missionaries must be vegetarians.