I believe this is a bug.
I have the Chronicle card deployed which gives me 1 food if a major improvement is selected by anyone.
I then selected to renovate and build a major improvement. I chose the Cooking Hearth from the pool of available cards as my improvement but I didn't receive the free Chronicle food for it. I then undid my turn and instead chose the Fireplace for which I DID receive the food.
The Cooking Hearth that I wanted to select had previously been returned to the deck by another player after they'd upgraded to a better hearth (via a minor improvement). All cards in the pool were shown with the free food symbol on top.
It appears that Chronicle doesn't apply to a card if it has previously been selected and then returned to the pool. If this is the case and it's playing as intended then the UI should not show the free food symbol as being available for the returned Cooking Hearth.
On the subject of bugs, will there be a patch for Agricola in the near future to address any outstanding issues?