There have been reports that producers of long grain rice in China are resorting to the use of industrial synthetic resin (Plastic) in the production of their popular Wuchang rice. The above video, which has been circulating on the Internet, shows a rice mill producing the fake rice, allegedly with potatoes, sweet potatoes and synthetic resin mixed with some percentage of the popular Wuchang rice. Reports say a small amount of real Wuchang rice is mixed with the plastic rice, sprayed with a fragrance to replicate the original smell, packaged and exported to other countries. There are concerns that this fake rice could be in markets across Africa, the continent with the highest Chinese rice consumption rate.
The rice is shaped like regular rice grains but reports say it remains hard even after cooking and that it may cause serious health issues like gastritis and cancer.
This report should not be ignored by the regulatory authorities, particularly the National Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC). It is doubtful if Nigeria has any scientific rice testing mechanism to detect this fake rice. The situation is compounded by the fact that high percentage of the rice in the market comes from smuggling.
The regulatory authorities should educate importers on the danger of importing unwholesome food into the country. Most importantly, they should investigate this fake rice issue so as to assure consumers that the rice sold across the country is safe for consumption.
Video credit: LiveLeak channel on Youtube