This vegetarian spicy shredded beef was produced by Henan Longxiang Food using recycled gutter oil. (Internet photo)
A major trial concerning China's largest ever case of the illegal use of kitchen waste and used cooking oil took place from Aug. 22-29 in the eastern coastal city of Ningbo. The companies involved in the case included Shandong Jinan Green Bio Energy and Jinan Bohui Biotechnology, who sold "gutter oil" to Henan Huikang Oil Company, Henan Cinglong Trading Company, Shandong Jinan Qianmen Commercial Center, Qingfeng Grain and Oil and Hongda Grain and Oil in Zhengzhou, the provincial capital of Henan in central China according to Shanghai's First Financial Daily.
Evidence presented at the trial showed that after blending the waste cooking oil with regular soybean oil, Henan Huikang and Henan Cinglong sold their products to Henan Longxiang and Henan Zhengzhou Qiaozuiba Food Company, making a profit of 1.5 million yuan (US$236,300) from a total sale of 160 tons of oil that should not have been allowed to re-enter the food chain.
Henan Longxiang, founded in 2000 and owning five processing plants, is one of the largest enterprises in the food industry. The company mainly produces spicy food, including vegetarian spicy intestine, spicy shredded beef and diced chicken. Zhengzhou Qiaozuiba, which also produces spicy foods, was founded in 2005 and now boasts annual production worth more than 100 million yuan (US$15.7 million). The company's products ,including spicy beef tendon, spicy fish sticks and spicy gluten, have been exported to South Korea, Vietnam and all major cities in China.
According to the First Financial Daily, Henan Longxiang has failed food quality tests on four previous occasions.
In addition, of the 380,000 yuan (US$60,000) of gutter oil products Hongda bought from Green Bio Energy, part of it was sold to Yi Bao Grain and Oil Business Department and Sanmenxia Xintai Oil Company in the Henan city of Xinxiang or sold in bulk to canteens of construction sites and snack stalls.
According to reports, Green Bio Energy and Bohui Biotechnology also sold gutter oil through other channels to 37 animal feed enterprises and numerous pharmaceutical enterprises, including Henan Jiaozuo Joincare Limited.