The head of a district in Wuhan, Hubei province was asked by a host on live television to take a bite out of an unnatural looking orange that was grown in her district area, where farmers have complained about pollution from a nearby cement plant contaminating their crops.
Despite the discoloration and off-texture of the peel, the official triumphantly proclaimed that the fruit was still “plump” and “sweet”.
Farmers across the country face similar plights from factories spreading harmful toxins through the water and soil. Crops in this Hunan village have shrunk in size and become grossly deformed over time thanks to pollution from a local aluminum production factory.
Back in 2013, residents in a Zhejiang village similarly challenged officials to swim in the province’s polluted rivers, although the outcome was slightly less sweet. One of the instigators was attacked by a mob of over 40 angry villagers.