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Iceland Mag

Food & Drink

Inventor of pineapple pizza passes away, President of Iceland sends his condolences

By Staff

  • Guðni Th. Jóhannesson The President of Iceland set off a firestorm earlier this year when he declared pineapple should be banned as a pizza topping. Photo/Vísir.

The President of Iceland, Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, sent his condolences to the friends and family of 82 year old Canadian man, Sam Panapolous who passed away on Friday. Panapolous is said to have been the inventor of Hawaiian pizza. Earlier this year a Guðni set off an international media frenzy after he joked that one of the first things he would do, if he had absolute power, would be to ban pineapple as a pizza topping. 

Read more: President of Iceland announces that he would ban pineapple as a pizza topping

In a Facebook status on Saturday the President of Iceland wrote that he had learned of the death of Panapolous on the internet.

"To his friends and family I send my condolences. According to news reports Sam was a fine man, with a great sense of humor. Our paths crossed in a sense earlier this year after I had joked to students at Menntaskólinn á Akureyri college about pizza and this particular topping - which should actually be banned, since we are on the subject."

Guðni points out that the story of "Pizza-gate" is a great example of how the world has shrunk, thanks to social media and the internet.

"My tounge-in-cheek joke in Akureyri became a source of news around the world. At the same time we got an unexpected opportunity to discuss the limits on the power of national leaders and people's freedom to do what they choose to do - as long as it does not hurt others."

We at Iceland Magazine were the first English language news outlet to break the Pizza-gate scandal, reporting on it on February 21. After the story became viral, being picked up by countless international media outlets, Guðni was forced to issue a clarification, explaining he did in fact not have the power to dictate pizza toppings, and that the statement had been made in jest.

Read more: Pineapple-pizza-gate: President backtracks "I can't dictate pizza toppings!" Then encourages people to put fish on their pizza

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