Plastic Rice in Nigeria: A Reality to Be Aware Of

How to Know Plastic Rice

The question Nigerians need answer to has always been is plastic rice in Nigeria? Well, the answer is yes. Since the video of some Chinese producing plastic rice and exporting it to various African countries leaked on YouTube, Nigerians have been caught in total confusion in differentiating between the original rice from the trending plastic rice in Nigeria.


Of course, in this Yuletide season where bags of rice are sold at expensive prices especially during this recession, Nigerians have been dully advised by the government as reports reaching the relevant authorities suggest that smugglers have succeeded in bringing plastic rice into Nigeria.  It was the Controller-in-charge of Federal Operations Unit Zone ‘A’ Ikeja Lagos, Haruna Mammud, who made this known during a press briefing when he displayed some bags of plastic rice seized by suspected smugglers.

What Is Plastic Rice?

According to the online publications, fake rice also known as the plastic rice is rice made by mixing sweet potatoes and synthetic resin (plastic) and later formed into “grains” which looks exactly like the natural grains of rice we eat everyday. This poisonous rice is then sprayed with a fragrance to mimic the smell of Wuchang rice (a more expensive brand in high demand), making it difficult for any one to differentiate between the original rice from the fake rice as it is the same in terms of size and shape.

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How To Know/Differentiate Between Original Rice and Plastic Rice in Nigeria

To know the difference between the real original rice and the fake plastic rice, nutritionist says the plastic rice remains hard after cooking and suggests that it poses a great danger to the person consuming it. It is the presence of the synthetic resin in the rice that makes it dangerous, harmful and poisonous to the human body.


Below are list of ways to identify fake poisonous plastic rice

1. The water test
Get a glass of cold water. Pour a tablespoon of raw rice in the glass and stir. If the rice goes to the bottom, it is all good. If it floats at the top, be careful because it means it contains ‘plastic rice’.

2. The fire test
You know what plastic smells like right. So, get a lighter and burn a handful of rice. If it catches fire and smells like burnt plastic, you have fake rice.

3. The hot oil test
Take some of the rice and drop into some real hot oil. If it is plastic, it will melt or stick together at the bottom of the pan.

4. The fungus test
Boil the rice. Leave it in a warm place for like 2-3 days. If mold does not appear in a few days, your rice is fake and should not be consumed. It will not get a mold because plastic is not affected by the weather or temperature.

5. The boiling test: Observe the rice while boiling. If it starts forming a thick layer at the top of the pot, it is ‘plastic rice’.

Finally, be aware of some top markets in Nigeria where foreign rice are sold. Popular rice markets in Daleko, Lagos, Onitsha in Anambra state, Aba in Abia, Abuja and other major markets in the country might with flooded with contaminated or even plastic rice. Always try to patronize locally made in Nigeria rice also known as Abakaliki rice which has been tested and proven to be more nutritious than foreign rice.


The Author


I am simply known as Ikenwa Chizoba, a seasoned blogger and the Founder of Nigerian Infopedia. A very simple person who loves writing, reading and research.

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