China's latest fake product? Paper rice
It's the latest allegation of fake food being produced in China.
A woman called Cai in Guangdong province claims she was sold rice that was far from pleasant and far from authentic.
The street vendor whom she bought the rice from said that it had been grown in the countryside, without the use of pesticide.
He may have been right about the latter part, but it had not been grown. Rather it had been created.
It turns out that the rice was made from tiny rolls of paper.
Shanghaiist reported that during a meal, Ms Cai was having a hard time chewing on her rice (below) when she took a "grain" and examined it more closely.
PHOTO: YOUTUBE/ HOSTDY
She told Apple Daily that she had watched in amazement as she unrolled out the "grain" into a piece of paper.
Ms Cai's discovery is the latest in the list of fakes that has emerged from China in the last six months.
1. Plastic Rice
Plastic rice that was seized in India. PHOTO: YOUTUBE/ TV9 GUJARATI
When news circulated that rice made of plastic had made its way to the rest of Asia, netizens panicked.
In May, The Straits Times reported that the plastic rice laced with poisonous resin, which stays hard even after it is cooked, had reportedly reached large rural populations such as those in India, Indonesia and Vietnam.
Heath experts had told ST that the fake rice, made of potatoes, sweet potatoes, with synthetic resin moulded into the shape of real rice, could cause serious damage to the digestive system if ingested.
2. Fake Goldman Sachs
In Shenzhen (above), you can get counterfeit branded goods such as bags, clothes and shoes.
Now, you can even hire a fake, "branded" financial services company.
Last month, TIME reported that a financial services company Goldman Sachs (Shenzhen) Financial Leasing Co. had no link to the US multinational financial giant, Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
This "fake" company also used the same Chinese name as the American one and has a similar logo.
Apart from name-poaching, the Chinese Goldman Sachs has also been accused of money-laundering and being part of organised crime in Macau.
3. Fake iPhones
What the real iPhone should look like. PHOTO: REUTERS
Two months ago, a Beijing factory said to have made more than 41,000 fake iPhones was shut down after the Beijing police received a tip-off from the US authorities.
According to Apple Insider, the operation, ran by a husband and wife team, reportedly had six assembly lines and hundreds of workers.
They had repackaged second-hand smartphone parts as authentic iPhones.
The phones, which were valued at 120 million yuan (S$26 million), were confiscated as part of a crackdown on intellectual property theft.
Source: Shanghaiist, The Straits Times, TIME, Apple Insider