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Pandas devour ice cake to celebrate 50 years at National Zoo

Mei Xiang, Xiao Qi Ji
Posted at 12:21 PM, Apr 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-16 15:21:08-04

WASHINGTON (AP) — The “cake” was made from frozen fruit juice, sweet potatoes, carrots, and sugar cane and it lasted about 15 minutes once giant panda mama Mei Xiang and her cub Xiao Qi Ji got hold of it.

The National Zoo’s most famous tenants had an enthusiastic breakfast Saturday in front of adoring crowds as the zoo celebrated 50 years of its iconic panda exchange agreement with the Chinese government.

In addition to hailing the 1972 agreement sparked by President Richard Nixon’s landmark visit to China, Saturday’s celebration also highlighted the success of the global giant panda breeding program, which has helped bring the bears back from the brink of extinction.