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Bizarre: Traditional wine distillers in China adding Viagra to drink

Kunal Majumder | Updated on: 14 February 2017, 7:05 IST

In China's Guangxi district, consumers of the traditional 'baijiu' drink found something surprising and potentially hazardous mixed in their drink.

Baijiu is an alcoholic beverage with 40-60 per cent alcohol by volume. In southern China, it is often made with glutinous rice, while in other parts of the country it is made with a variety of grains.

Two distillers in the city of Liuzhou were found mixing into their product a white powder-like substance called Sildenafil. Sildenafil is better known as the erectile dysfunction medication, Viagra.

More than 5,300 bottles of alcohol worth about 700,000 yuan (Rs 72 lakh) have been seized by investigators in Liuzhou. Investigations are continuing.

More than 50 mg of Sildenafil a day can qualify as overdose for an adult, with serious symptoms such as bladder pain, numbness, indigestion, itching, and even convulsions and loss of sight.

Recently, there have been serious questions about food safety in China. In June, more than 100,000 tonnes of years old smuggled meat was seized by the police. In 2008, milk adulterated with melamine had affected the health of 300,000 people.

First published: 14 February 2017, 7:05 IST
 
Kunal Majumder @kunalmajumder

Editor for Speed News aka Catch Live and Operations at Catch, Kunal enjoys measuring his life in numbers. Of his 30 years of life, 12 have been spent working, 9 of them in journalism. The remaining 3 were spent in 2 call centres, talking to British and Australians about insurance and cellphones. In his journalistic capacity, Kunal has worked at 3 publications and headed 2 online teams. The '3' includes Images Multimedia, Tehelka and DNA. The '2' includes Tehelka and DNA. Catch is Kunal's 6th workplace, where he will head his 3rd team as speed news editor. As a reporter, he won 2 awards - Statesman Award for Rural Reporting and UNFPA-Laadli Award for Gender Sensitivity. That's his story in Prime Numbers (a section on this site from which he's taken inspiration).

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