China Campaigns Against Illegal Cooking Oil

China Daily reports that China’s State Council is ordering local authorities to do more to fight the illegal trade in cooking oil made from kitchen waste:

  “Gutter oil” is usually made from discarded kitchen waste that has been refined and was once reportedly commonly used by small restaurants. Although it looks clean, it actually contains toxic substances, including “aflatoxin,” which can cause cancer.

In a story last year on the problem, China Daily told of one company that was shut down for selling illegal cooking oil, then “re-registered as a bio-energy technology company” and resumed its old business. Annual consumption of “gutter oil,” which can be one-fifth as expensive as real cooking oil, could be as much as 1.5 million tons, more than 10 percent of China’s consumption of legal edible oil.

In Beijing, the Xinhua News Agency reported, the current crackdown has focused on ” waste oil from roast duck establishments ,” popular for its “cheap price and flavor .”