The direct translation of an old Chinese saying is “people regard food as their heaven” (min yi shi wei tian, or food is what matters to people). However, the average person’s heaven seems broken in the Middle Kingdom. Chinese people still feel insecure about what they eat on a daily basis because nowadays food safety incidents are more frequent than ever.
Recently, the main character on the stage is refined trench oil. It is used as industrial oil in developed countries, yet in China, it hides in restaurant dishes. News media discover that small restaurants in different provinces mix cooking oil with refined trench oil, which contains tens of carcinogens as a way to reduce costs. A professor said that the chance of encountering refined trench oil when you dine out is 10%.
Chinese government agencies started another special campaign against refined trench oil. As usual, several suspects were put into jail. However, it is hard to find refined trench oil through normal lab tests under the national standard for cooking oil, which does not include indicators referring to any illegal substance. READ MORE »