Wu Heng on throwing China’s food out the window

I hope this book will make you feel that it’s time to throw unsafe food out the window.”

Wu HengSo writes Wu Heng, the founder of Throw it Out the Window (www.zccw.info), a website staffed by volunteers that documents China’s rampant food safety problem and tallies incidents of unsafe food — 3,449 since 2004. In July, Mr. Wu, 28, a former history student and now a journalist who lives in Shanghai, published a book by the same title aiming to raise awareness of a problem he says is fueled by greed, ignorance and corruption, and to support consumer rights.

The book’s table of contents vividly illustrates the problem. Resembling a periodic table of elements, it points the reader to chapters dealing with an unsafe food, a chemical or a policy problem. They include melamine milk and leather milk, fake beef and fake lamb, malachite fish and heavy metal fish, garbage pigs, gutter oil, bleach mushrooms and sulfuric acid lychees, institutional overlaps, policy gaps and special interests.

Finally, it shows Mr. Wu’s prescription for how people can protect themselves, to a certain degree. He calls this the “Three RPs Principle”: Right Price, Right Place and Rotate Poisons. 

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About Douglas Powell

A former professor of food safety and the publisher of barfblog.com, Powell is passionate about food, has five daughters, and is an OK goaltender in pickup hockey. Download Doug’s CV here. Dr. Douglas Powell editor, barfblog.com retired professor, food safety 3/289 Annerley Rd Annerley, Queensland 4103 dpowell29@gmail.com 61478222221 I am based in Brisbane, Australia, 15 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time