Chinese cadmium-tainted wheat headed for ethanol and industrial use

August 30, 2016 |

In China, the government has allegedly bought all of the cadmium-tainted wheat in Xinxiang, Henan Province with the intention of using it for ethanol production as well as to make industrial starch used in paper mills and textile manufacturing. At least 10ha of land has been contaminated by the soft metal since at least 2012 when a soil restoration project was set to take place but farmers continued to grow wheat on the land anyway. A local NGO has been tracking the contamination levels of wheat grown on the identified land with results showing six to 34 times more cadmium than allowed by national food safety standards. The NGO is concerned that the wheat could have reached the local market before authorities bought it up.

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