There are multiple videos going viral on social media with people complaining about ‘plastic’ cabbage, egg, muffins, etc since a very long time. But then in the last few days in Hyderabad, there have been complaints from the Charminar area, Yousufguda, Saroornagar and Meerpet that multiple outlets are selling what is being dubbed as plastic rice; which has the potential to cause fatal health problems.
Acting on these complaints, the food and civil supplies department has sent in its task force which has collected samples of cooked rice and detained stocks at grocery stores, sending them for qualitative analysis to a laboratory. People had been complaining of uneasiness that the doctor could not cure for the last couple of weeks. They suffered loose motions, and other gastric problems.
Videos are circulated that show polythene being inserted into machines from where noodle-like plastic sticks emerge, which then get cut into fine rice. The videos have gone viral on social media claiming that it is plastic rice coming from China that has infiltrated the market. This has created panic among the people and rumors on social media have added to the fears. But none of this has been firmly established. The qualitative test reports from labs are awaited. While producers and suppliers are trying to cheat customers by selling fake products we ought to know the way to differentiate things.
Here are 5 ways to identify fake or plastic rice:
Take a handful of rice and burn the same by using matchsticks or lighter. If the rice is made of plastic, then it will release plastic smell immediately after burning.
Boil rice and keep it in a bottle for 2-3 days. If the boiled rice does not get affected by fungus, then it happens to be plastic rice and not the usual rice.
Take rice and drop hot oil on to it. If the rice is made of plastic, then it will melt in a while and glue at the bottom of the container.
This is known as the water test. Take a bottle of water and pour one tablespoon of rice and stir it for a while. If the rice floats on top of the water level, then it is plastic rice. This is because natural rice does not float on water.
We can also identify fake rice while boiling. If the rice is made of plastic, then it will form a thick layer on the pot at the time of boiling.