Professionals should hire professionals, not human resources personnel. Have you not considered the educational differences between someone with a BS in Human Resources and a Physician, a Research Scientist, etc. I have played head games with HR personnel you could not imagine, both as a candidate and as the person authorizing the hire. In the military I used the HR department to provide me resumes of civilian professionals and little else. In the business world, I found them less than useless.
Has it not crossed your mind that these people need to be recruited, not weeded out? That there may be as few as a dozen people actually capable of doing the job, and, they all have jobs. If your department managers are worth their titles they will simply be sending you people to officiate the hiring process for, and not insult. There are professionals I have hired that are now, also, retiring from those positions, once you hire the individuals, you must keep them happy.
Your citing all those Fortune 500 companies that use the techniques you expound does not impress me, the military is 15 years ahead of all of them in technology, and, professional development. I'm sure you consider yourself clever, not one to be manipulated in a conversation. Well, let me assure you that along with the mental ability to complete an MD or PhD comes a certain mastery of language and quickness of mind that you do not understand. Your very attitude toward simplistic tricks of language, (the fruit problem) or whatever you think you are looking for in the M&M problem, indicates that you do not consider that the candidate may well have the ability to manipulate YOU!
HR is good at hiring entry level personnel, but, positions beyond that require the experience of an expert in the field you are hiring for. Your general problem solving criteria may, quite possibly, not be what is required for success in a particular position when professionals are concerned.
And to return to the M&M question, I am quite serious when I say I know how they are manufactured, and when asked such a question I will simply explain the process in as complex a language as I believe the questioner can understand. I do not find it a trick question, or, even a quaint question for that matter, I do not see how it could be used to test someone's ingenuity. Its a question from my field of expertise. So I ask you again, what would you say when a cogent and detailed explanation was returned to you? Would you tell me that my answer was not creative enough? Would you ask follow-up questions to the procedure? Would you admit your ignorance and tell me it was a trick question and that you didn't mean what you asked? Do you really know enough of the world to question a highly educated professional in such a manner?