Thursday, July 12, 2007

Watch your buns

Chinese TV is reporting at least one Chinese food supplier is cutting corners by making its buns 60% from waste paper.

In the case of the fake buns the CCTV reporters used hidden cameras to show the lengths the bao zi producers were going to in order to cut costs.

To get the right consistency the cardboard was shown being soaked in caustic soda, a poisonous industrial solvent.

The owners told the reporter they then mixed it with about 40 per cent fatty meat and the flavour enhancer monosodium glutamate before selling the bao zi in nearby markets.

Despite discrepancies in colour and texture, the bun makers - who were shown wearing little more than boxer shorts and flip-flops - said they did not believe customers are able to tell the difference.

"Do you eat them?" the CCTV reporter asked the factory owner.

"No, I don't eat them," he replied.
Hat tip to Cannonfire for the link from al-Jazeera's coverage of it. Why aren't American papers covering it? Perhaps because they all rely only on the Associated Press these days of investor profits at the expense of newsroom budgets -- and if the AP doesn't say it's news, by God, it's not news here.

I think I'll skip the wonton soup in my Chinese carryout this weekend.

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