Remember when we said not everything caused cancer, especially not mushrooms? Um, well, we take that back. A recent experiment by a grade-six pupil in Beijing has found that more than 90 percent of fresh mushrooms in markets are tainted with fluorescent brightener to make them appear fresh, which is considered to be potentially carcinogenic.
We know, you’re thinking a grade-six pupil would never be able to uncover something so substantial, but his results have been backed by Gao Ruifang, a microbiologist of the China Agricultural University. 16 types of mushrooms were tested, using ultraviolet light to pinpoint which mushrooms had been dipped in brightener. Out of the 16, the only three that were left untainted were either organic or dried. Now that’s some food for thought…
With melamine in our food and heavy pollution absorbed by our farms this probably won’t be surprising to the average desensitized reader. However, paying an increasingly hefty sum for goods that should be discarded could be a problem that evokes a response in all of us. The issue that will become increasingly apparent to all foodies, meat lovers and vegans alike, are rising food prices. Financial Times reports:
“Prices have seriously shot up. We noticed it when we went to buy cabbages for the winter, the price used to be two mao per jin (0.5kg) and now it’s as much as six or seven mao,” says Mr Xin, a cab driver who lives in the Beijing suburbs
So be wary of what you buy, fellow food eaters, it’s not too late to invest a little in organic produce. There’s always the frugal approach of planting one of those adorable herbal pot plants on your window sill too! And mushrooms are pretty easy to grow too!