Wednesday, February 24, 2010

:: Wow... fried with plastic ?

Fried with plastic
Published on: Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Kota Kinabalu: That banana fritters stay crispy for long hours due to dissolving plastic straws in the wok before frying had long been suspected but never really proven.

In what seems the first such evidence, the Principal of a college stumbled upon a piece of plastic straw that had half-melted and had embedded into the banana fritters which she bought at a shopping mall outlet, Monday.

Grace Chang Sim Vui, 32, of Cosmopoint College at the MAA building, here, wasted no time in heading to the Daily Express office with the evidence so that the public could be sufficiently warned.

"I bought this from the food court in the complex nearby at 3pm.

I bit into something stiff and realised it was part of a plastic straw," she said.

"This is terrible. Imagine many people, especially my students, have been patronising this food court daily and consuming fried food with elements of dissolved plastic in them everyday.

"I am not surprised if all the fried stuff in this food court as well as other places are cooked with plastic because many food items found in these places are still hard and crispy even after several hours," she said.

"This goes for fish and squid as well."

She called on the enforcement authority, especially health officers, to look into this matter and take action on the unscrupulous traders who don't care about the rakyat's health so long as they made money.

The piece of half-bitten banana fritter was left with the Daily Express for safe-keeping, in case the Health Ministry officials needed the evidence.

A senior lecturer of the same college, Patrick Sadom, 49, said he had not only heard but seen an immigrant food seller once throwing a whole piece of plastic straw into the wok while preparing her food.

"However, I did not dare say anything because I was scared," he said, and was glad that his colleague managed to secure the evidence.

"Many have heard of this thing, but nothing has really been revealed.

That is why these business operators are not scared," he said.

"I really hope with solid proof this time, something will really be done as people may end up with health problems through long term consumption," he said. Plastics contain polymers which is made from chemicals.

Federation of Malaysian Consumers Association (Fomca) Vice President, Datuk Patrick Sindu, who was present, said he wants the matter to be probed by the Health Department.

"I want all relevant authorities especially from the enforcement side to act on this matter, investigate this case and make spot checks on eateries everywhere," he said.