From waste leather to drug capsules: Toxic gelatin factory exposed in Hebei

Alia | April 17th, 2012 - 9:23 pm

The latest item on the toxic food list in China is drug capsules made of industrial gelatin extracted from bleached waste leathers. Such capsules can cause cancer due to high level of chromium resulting from leather tanning processing. As of now, China has banned the sale of 13 drugs and arrested 22 for allegedly making and selling capsules made from discarded leather.

From waste leather to drug capsules:

Below are pictures from Xue Yang Ming Gelatin Protein Factory in Hengshui, Hebei Pronvice. The factory was reported to sell waste leather gelatin to drug capsule manufacturers in Zhejiang Province.

Waste leather, aka, “blue leather”

“Blue leathers” soaked for days so that they are “white” and puffed up

Soaking plates for waster leather

Brewing facilities


Waste leather stocks

Waste water from the factory

The head of the factory has already been arrested and workshops shut down

[Source: NBD]


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7 Responses to “From waste leather to drug capsules: Toxic gelatin factory exposed in Hebei”

  1. [...] arrested 22 people for selling industrial gelatin laden with chromium, believed to cause cancer, to capsule manufacturers. Since then, Chinese shoppers have questioned the gelatin that’s used in bubble tea, [...]

  2. Peko says:

    Looks to me like the pictures were chosen at random and not related to each.

    There are plenty of Limed Hide and Skin Splits and Pieces available to make Gelatin (like picture 2).

    To make Gelatin from Wet Blue Leather the Chromium has to be stripped out usually with Oxalic Acid which is an expensive and probably uneconomic process.

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  4. [...] in China, the story spread like virus on the Chinese internet. Yet unlike other recent food safety scandals, apple farmers in Yantai fought back, denouncing claims of wide use of poisoned apple bags. The [...]

  5. [...] it’s safe to eat anything in China. Two latest items that received the most media attention are toxic drug capsules made of gelatin extracted from waste leather scraps and preserved fruits made with excess [...]

  6. [...] drug capsules that are made of industrial gelatin extracted from waste leather scraps are the latest food scandal in China. The Chinese government has already arrested 9 and detained [...]

  7. [...] Rage and condemnation skyrocked again in China when people learned that drugs in the country may kill instead of cure. CCTV Weekly Quality Monitor exposed that some drug capsule manufacturers in the country have been using industrial gelatin extracted from bleached waste leathers rather than up-to-standard edible gelatin. Such waster leather gelatin can cause cancer due to high concentration of chromium. [To see how waster leathers are turned into drug capsules, click here]. [...]

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