What is a Kiwi?

The fruit, the bird, and New Zealanders

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nikio
Hey there, I am a born and bred New Zealander and until recently thought that the entire population knew that our nickname was a "Kiwi". But after using 'kiwigirl84' as a nickname recently on another website, I was amazed at how many people questioned my name. They thought I must love Kiwi fruit, and when I said "No, its because I'm from New Zealand" they just got confused, and some even asked 'Where?'.

But anyway, my questions to you are:

Have you heard the nickname 'Kiwi' before?
What is your nationality i.e. is it just an English Speaking thing?
Why do you think we are called Kiwi's? Is it because of the fruit or the bird?

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one51
I've heard the nickname before.
American.
Didn't realize it was from either the fruit or the bird.

Kiwis do taste good though. The fruit I mean. Never tried a bird...
NOFXmike
(I'm american)
Before I moved to Munich, I had never heard the term. Most tourists have no idea what I mean when I say "So we've got 3 americans, 2 japanese, and 4 kiwis on the tour today".

I still feel guilty when I eat your eggs though...they just taste so good. It's weird that you're the only humans that lay eggs that others eat.
admetus
Yes, I'd heard the nickname before, but I'm English, and, I thought it was after the bird. Our neighbours, the French, generally, wouldn't have heard of the nickname, though it is used there in some specialist sporting contexts (namely rugby league and sailing, specifically the America's Cup).

Just my 2d on a slow Saturday afternoon.
JerseyBoy
Yes, I had heard of 1) New Zealanders being called Kiwis, 2) Kiwi fruit and 3) Kiwi birds before, and I'm American.
Small Town Boy
Kiwis do taste good though. The fruit I mean. Never tried a bird...
You should try one; I've found New Zealand girls to be very friendly.
Owain Glyndwr
I think the term originally applied to New Zealand soldiers because their uniform badges all had a kiwi bird on them. They were nicknamed Kiwis by the Brits and Aussies. It was only later that the term was widely used to mean all New Zealanders
UrbanAngel
Yes, English, the bird.
Nimitz
Canadian but of Aussie parents - knew Kiwis were from NZ, always thought it was 'coz of the bird not the fruit
Carm
Have known for years NewZealanders are Kiwis, don't know when it started, but always knew it was because of the bird not the fruit.
nikio
Most tourists have no idea what I mean when I say "So we've got 3 americans, 2 japanese, and 4 kiwis on the tour today".
I'm beginning to think it might be more of a Commonwealth/Well travelled thing. Its not a big deal, its just I always thought everyone knew. We are named after the Bird not the fruit. The nickname orginated in the Military during WWI, because of the Kiwi bird logo on their uniforms. And incase you're interested, Kiwifruit aren't even originally from New Zealand, they're actually a Chinese Gooseberry,

From Wikipedia

The fruit gets its name from a marketing strategy, naming it after the kiwi, the national bird of New Zealand, where the fruit was first commercially popularised in 1959 by the New Zealand fruit-and-vegetable export company Turners and Growers; previously it was known as the Chinese gooseberry, but due to the Cold War, the Chinese label seemed unfit for popularization of the fruit in Western countries. Growers gradually adopted the name and in 1974 the kiwifruit became the official trade name.
Katrina
Kiwi = NZers, UK, bird as am old enough to remember when the fruit was still called a Chinese Gooseberry.
Grinner
Be thankful you arent from Yorkshire... they name themselves after a pudding!

Yes, I know its an old one!!
eurovol
Have you heard the nickname 'Kiwi' before?
What is your nationality i.e. is it just an English Speaking thing?
Why do you think we are called Kiwi's? Is it because of the fruit or the bird?
Yes
American
Because Dodo was already taken

Next?
claytii
Oi kiwi gurl where you living at... Im also a Special KIWI living in germany...
I havnt found any yet... Unfortuantly.. But tops for explaining the KIWI!!!
I always just keep getting called "sheep shager" ooooo!!! i KNOW!!! Sad!
But ya! Get in touch ya!!!
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