Follow Alaska's Trails -- On Your Own -- With Bearfoot Travel Magazines

Bearfoot Talks About Hot Tang: Instead Of Juice, Alaskans Got Their Vitamin C In An Orange Powder

Vitamin C replacement in rural Alaska.
Ray Genet advertised Hot Tang.

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 1970's. 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 1970's, 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."
For those who had access to a little Canadian whisky, you added 2 ounces to the Hot Tang, making a low-budget log cabin Trapper's Toddy.

Share this post

Post a comment

  1. That is so nice. Alaska lacks the growth of citrus fruits and lack of vitamin C leads to different problems. So discovery of this Hot tang keeps them fit. Thank you for sharing this information with us.



Next Post
Newer Post
Previous Post
Older Post

Contact Us At Bearfoot

Bearfoot Travel Magazines A Division Of Northcountry Communications, Inc. Jeremy Weld Linda Weld Tim Weld 2440 East Tudor #122 Anchorage, Alaska 99507 907 320-1145 Fax: 1 800 478 8301