Prawns being injected with jelly-like substances so they will sell for higher prices have been filmed in this shocking video showing dodgy food practices.
The footage, taken in a Vietnam factory, shows the crustaceans being injected in the head and tail.
This will make them plumper and heavier, commanding more money in the export market.
The footage, shot by a Vietnamese TV station, shows the tiger prawns being filled with a substance known as carboxymethyl cellulose or CMC.
Although it’s not harmful to people, it is hoodwinking customers into thinking the prawns are a better product.
Dissolved in water, CMC is often used as a thickener for icing.
The Epoch Times reported earlier this year that the gel-injected prawns were also making their way from China into the US, and food safety experts said there is reason to be concerned.
The gel, they explained, was usually extracted from animal skins and bones, and composed of collagen, but it was not always so harmless.
Wu Wenhui, a professor at Shanghai Ocean University, said in an interview in the Chinese press that customers should be wary about industrial gel ending up in shrimp, given that it’s cheaper than the edible version.
“Industrial gel is used for furniture, print, and contains many heavy metals such as lead and mercury, which harms the liver and blood, and is even carcinogenic.”
Even if the gel is the harmless kind, there’s a concern that its injection process may not be entirely without danger.
“Who can guarantee that the process is aseptic?” said Liu Huiping, a member of the executive council of the Tianjin aquatic products association, in an interview with the Beijing News