Carcinogenic Noodles Processed in Guangdong, China

August 15, 2007 Updated: August 15, 2007

TAIPEI—Four bean noodle workshops in Foshan City, Guangdong Province, China, were found to be adding illegal food additives in their products. The local quality supervision department found, in an unannounced inspection, a large amount of tartrazine, apple green, and industrial paraffin—a type of carcinogen in the workshops.

Guangzhou Daily reported on August 12 that the working environments of the four workshops are rather unsatisfactory. Tartrazine, apple green, and industrial paraffin were scattered on the floor, along with black stinking barrels.

The local quality supervision department found that these four small workshops had neither food production permits, nor health licenses or business licenses.

The inspection officials also found that these workshops are suspected of over applying additives such as tartrazine, apple green, sodium metabisulfite (bleach), and so on. One of the workshops even illegally used GB254 industrial paraffin in their product, a substance used to make the bean noodle look smooth and shiny.

Extracting industrial paraffin will release PAHs, which are powerful carcinogens.