The mass production of plastic rice is centered in China and leads to serious health issues. Namely, this all came as a consequence of the Wuchang rice which is really popular as it has a unique taste and pleasant smell. Moreover, it also twice more expensive that the normal kind of rice.
With the demand for Wuchang rice so high, companies have started to exploit the opportunity and create fake rice which they sell for the same high price.
It is believed that China had been producing and selling this brand of rice for nearly four years now deceiving consumers into believing that they were purchasing the real deal. This fake product looks like the original brand at face value with a similar shape and size but with one major difference which is only discovered when purchased and cooked. The rice remains hard after hours of cooking and it is extremely detrimental to the health of anyone that consumes it.
Fake “Wuchang rice”
An undercover journalist found out that, when producing the fake rice, Chinese companies are mixing a small amount of real Wuchang rice with plastic rice, which they then spray with a fragrance to replicate the original and package in the same way.
People believe that 800,000 tons of actual Wuchang rice are produced annually, while a devastating number of 10 million tons is sold. This shows that more than 9 million tons of the sold “Wuchang rice” is actually fake.
It was reported in the Korea Times that when distributors were asked about this fake rice they suggested that it was highly profitable to sell it as there was demand for it both within China and abroad in places such as Singapore, Vietnam and India.
Investigations are currently in top gear by the National Food Authority of the Republic of the Philippines and they are now using a device called a spectroscopy to determine if the rice on sale is the original of fake brand. They have also issued a serious warning to both consumers and distributors of this fake product, warning that perpetrators will be prosecuted.
Dangerous of consuming plastic
Eating just three bowls of this fake “Wuchang rice” is thought to be the same as consuming an entire plastic bag, causing serious and even fatal digestive issues, especially if consumed daily as is often the case.
Regarding the fact that most Chinese eat more than half a pound of rice on a daily basis, this becomes a seriously dangerous issue.
According to research, this rice leads to serious health risks linked to bisphenol A and a class of chemicals known as phthalates, often found in plastics. Bisphenol A is able to impede the functions of hormones, especially estrogen. In has been related to negative results on reproductive development in a few animal studies.
Meanwhile, phthalates are a group of “plasticizers” that are found in various products, despite having been banned in the EU since 2005. Phthalates can also disrupt hormones; however, unlike bisphenol A it is testosterone that is affected.
It is possible that we all have some detectable amounts of bisphenol A and phthalates in our body system as a result of the contamination of our food source that are stored in plastics, whether they be plastic jars, plates, cups or bowls. This been said it gets worse if the plastics are actually ingested as it is the case with the fake Wuchang rice.
While there has been no case of this plastic rice in the U.S; the fact that the rice was being exported and consumed outside of China draws into question whether or not countries are asking enough questions about their food sources before importing goods.