Thiruvananthapuram: Consumers in Kerala are facing up to a new threat following the appearance of apparently artificial eggs in stores and supermarkets in different parts of the state.
People are referring to the eggs as ‘Chinese’ eggs. Their shells are hard to crack, an omelette made of them is hard and rubbery, and the eggs do not rot even after many days on the shelves.
Only a few months ago, consumers in Kerala were shocked to learn that meat from cattle that would have died from causes other than slaughter was being sold in the state, after being brought it from across the state border. The meat was referred to as ‘tsunami’ meat.
Reports of the ‘Chinese’ eggs have come from different districts in the state including the hilly district of Idukki in the high ranges, and Ernakulam district, the state’s commercial capital.
State health minister, K.K. Shylaja has said a probe would be launched to find out the truth about the mystery eggs, but health officials have not stopped the sale of the eggs anywhere.
One consumer who bought what he thought were a dozen normal eggs from the state capital’s largest vegetable and provision market in Chala was quoted as saying that the eggs extremely hard to crack and that the contents turned rubbery on being put on the fire.
Distributors of the eggs say that the consignment has come from neighbouring Tamil Nadu state but the exact origin of the eggs is yet to be traced.
As news spread about the sale of ‘Chinese’ eggs across different stores, many people contacted television channels to give their own experiences, while others put up videos of the eggs being cooked, on social media.
At restaurants, some customers are now deciding against ordering items on the menu that have egg as an ingredient, following fears of rampant use of the artificial eggs.