Dark secret of the Thai glutinous rice
By : Sim Bak Heng


MUAR: Watch out if you're buying black glutinous rice in Thailand. It could be just plain white rice dyed black.

Housewife Tan Siew Sin, of Taman Sri Emas, brought back some black glutinous rice from a vacation in Thailand recently, only to discover its dark secret when she soaked it to clean it."The water became as dark as black ink."I soaked it repeatedly but the water remained black in colour.

"I went to a sundry shop and bought a bag of local black glutinous rice and soaked it in water to compare. The water remained clear," she said.

Tan brought her complaint to Bentayan state assemblyman Gwee Tong Hiang yesterday.She said she broke a few grains of the rice from both batches. The Thai rice was white on the inside while the local version was the same as the outside. She suspected the rice had been dyed to fetch a higher price.

"I haven't cooked the rice from Thailand because I'm afraid it might be a health hazard.

"I'm bringing this up in the press to warn people to be extra careful when buying black glutinous rice in Thailand."

Gwee said the sample of the Thai rice Tan had given him would be sent to the Health Ministry to determine whether it had any harmful additives or colouring.

He urged all consumers to take extra care when shopping for food items outside the country.
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