Hong Kong watchdog shocked no shellfish in lobster meatballs

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Hong Kong (AFP) – It may look like lobster and taste like lobster, but Hong Kong’s consumer watchdog is warning hungry hot pot fanatics that the shellfish-flavored meatballs don’t, in fact, come from under the sea. .

Meatballs are ubiquitous in food-obsessed Hong Kong – offered on skewers by food vendors at lunchtime and also a popular menu item at hot pot and barbecue restaurants.

But anyone with a fondness for lobster meatballs might get a little nasty with Monday’s press release from the Consumer Council of Hong Kong, which said it conducted DNA tests on a variety of meatballs for the first time.

“All 10 lobster meatball samples were not detected with shellfish DNA, including one sample that listed lobster in the ingredient list,” he said.

Only two samples tested had indicated that they weren’t made from real lobster, calling their products “lobster flavored meatballs” and “imitation lobster meatballs”.

The shocking discovery still holds some mystery – particularly what exactly the so-called “lobster dumplings” contained, said Nora Tam Fung-yee, chair of the council’s research and testing committee.

“We found other ingredients … which could be other seafood or even meat type ingredients,” she told the South China Morning Post.

“But our testing focused on lobster-related DNA, so we only know that lobster dumplings don’t contain crustacean DNA.”

The Consumer Council also found that out of 20 beef and beef tendon dumplings tested, only seven contained 100% cow DNA – the rest had pork and chicken detected in parts of it.

“(Eight) samples even had a lower proportion of cow DNA compared to pig and chicken DNA,” he said, warning consumers with dietary or religious restrictions to “take extra care “.

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