Pigs’ feet tainted with caustic soda and hydrogen peroxide were found being sold at Beijing’s Wantong Agricultural Wholesale Market, leading to a police bust on an unlicensed pigs’ feet processing workshop where tons of products were confiscated, Xinhua News reports.
An insider identified as Zhang brought reporters to a hidden pigs’ feet processing workshop which recently moved into his neighborhood.
According to Zhang, the workers first pour caustic soda and hydrogen peroxide into a large pool, and after mixing the chemicals, they pour frozen pigs’ feet into it. Zhang said that he was told by workers there that it took hours to soak the pigs’ feet. The caustic soda softens the feet so they better retain water and feel heavier, while the hydrogen peroxide bleaches them white.
Buyers come here to buy the pigs’ feet and resell them with the knowledge they are tainted.
The hawkers at the market often keep a certain amount of unprocessed pigs’ feet in sight incase food inspectors come-a-knocking, according to the report.
The “industrial pigs’ feet” were mainly sent to a few of the local wholesale markets and buyers are mostly community retailers, restaurant purchasers and delicatessen owners.
“They don’t come here to buy the pigs’ feet for their own consumption but to resell them with the knowledge that they are tainted,” said an official involved in the bust.
Chaoyang district’s food and drug law enforcement inspectors said they confiscated 1385 kg of pigs’ feet, 5 kg of caustic soda, one bucket of hydrogen peroxide,18 kg of sodium nitrite, 12.5 kg of coloring and 500 kg of chlorine dioxide during the raid. Woof.
By Lucy Liu
[ Images via Xinhua News ]