The factory marinaded the duck meat to give it the flavor of lamb. (Internet Photo)
A factory in Dalian in northeastern China's Liaoning province has been adding fertilizer to duck meat to make it smell like mutton and then disguising it as lamb to sell on the market. During the Spring Festival, the factory was discovered and ordered to shut down, according to the Hong Kong-based Ming Pao.
The Liaoshen Evening News quoted local police who raided the factory as saying, "The whole room was dark and smelled terrible. It is certainly not an acceptable food-processing factory." The police found ammonium chloride fertilizer bags, which they suspect the factory added to the duck meat, giving it the strong smell of lamb. Ammonium chloride can be used as fertilizer and as an additive in animal feed, but there are strict regulations on the amount that can be used. Police also found that after marinating in meat tenderizer powder and a coloring agent, the frozen duck product was then stamped "New Zealand lamb chops class A."
The accounting book seized from the factory shows that the products were sold to area hot-pot restaurants and supermarkets. The authorities said real lamb meat boils clear in a hot pot, but if the soup turn black and foamy, the meat is fake.