IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

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Captain USA via Wikimedia Commons

LOOK, MA, HEALTHIER CHOCOLATE 

We always knew the chocolate was better in Europe — as in, Swiss chocolate, right? Turns out, even American chocolate has been better in Europe. Nestlé has announced it’s removing artificial coloring and flavoring from all of its chocolate candy products sold in the U.S. by the end of 2015. That’s right, soon, Butterfinger, Crunch, 100 Grand (if anyone cares about that one… You probably don’t) and Baby Ruth — and about 246 other products — will be branded as coming with no artificial flavors or colors.  

“Nestlé is the world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company and our commitment to remove artificial flavors and certified colors in our chocolate candy brands is an important milestone,” Doreen Ida, president of Nestlé USA Confections and Snacks, said in a press release. “We know that candy consumers are interested in broader food trends around fewer artificial ingredients. As we thought about what this means for our candy brands, our first step has been to remove artificial flavors and colors without affecting taste or increasing the price. We’re excited to be the first major U.S. candy manufacturer to make this commitment.”

It’s a game of catch-up, though, as the European Union began requiring warning labels on candies that contain artificial dyes and The Guardian reported that Nestlé U.K. removed those ingredients in 2008.

ONLY THE MOST FASHION-FORWARD 

Just in case you thought fashion couldn’t be functional — and even save your life, take a look at the latest accessory debuting in Beijing. Fashion models on the runway at Mercedes-Benz China Fashion Week sported a variety of stylish smog masks. They were color-coordinated to match outfits, borrowing the orange piping from a tank top, having pink offgas options, metallic finishes and thinning stripes across the nose piece.

How delightful to see the clothing industry rising to meet the occasion in reducing exposure to ambient particulate matter that has sent photos around the world of Shanghai so shrouded in a brown cloud that the tops of its skyscrapers are nearly invisible. Air pollution contributed to 1.2 million premature deaths in China, according to the 2010 Global Burden of Disease Study.

And since there’s no giant dome over China, that air pollution has been tracked dissipating to lots of other fun places, like California. Up next, surf boards, bikinis and smog masks.

JUST DON’T TELL PEOPLE WHAT YOU FIND IN THE OCEAN 

It stands to reason that if you find buried treasure, or sunken treasure, it’s yours, right? Wrong. As some divers recently discovered after unearthing about 2,000 gold coins off the coast of Israel, unearthing priceless and long-lost treasures doesn’t incur so much as a finder’s fee. The nearly 20 pounds of gold coins, which were found near an ancient harbor, date to the reign of Fatimad Caliphate, ruling body for much of the a Middle East and Northern Africa from 909 to 1171.

A spokesperson for the Israel Antiquities Authority told The Guardian the find was “so valuable that it’s priceless,” and was now property of the state. Apparently, finder’s keepers principles don’t apply. We’d say the divers should have just kept it hush-hush, but who knows what the exchange rate is on a 1,000-year-old dinar.

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com