(CN) Fake Shark Fin
- South China Morning Post
9th January 2013
Video: Chinese restaurants found to serve poisonous fake shark fin soup
by Amy Li
Think twice before you order your favourite shark fin soup next time -
chances are you may be paying for an expensive bowl of mung bean starch gel
An investigative report by China's CCTV on Tuesday revealed the shocking
practise among restaurants in Beijing, Guangdong, Zhejiang and Fujian:
serving chemically made "shark fin" to diners who are made to believe they
are eating the real thing.
A mixture of mung bean starch, gelatine, sodium and other chemicals, the
fake fin dish served in expensive restaurants and wedding feasts has become
a popular choice among customers, especially those eager to impress guests
with a "high-end" dish, said the report.
In a Zhejiang restaurant named Xanadu, a fake bowl of shark fin was sold for
150 yuan (HK$186), while the ingredients cost only 5 yuan, said the report.
CCTV estimated that up to 40 per cent of the shark fins consumed in mainland
Chinese restaurants could be fake. Experts warn that chemicals and additives
used to make fake fins are poisonous and could damage the lung and other
The shocking revelation has sparked heated discussions on China's
micro-blogging service Sina Weibo. "It's the corrupt officials who eat shark
fins, right?" said a blogger. "It's a fair world after all."
"People who eat it for a better image should get it over with now," said
another Weibo user.