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What Are Starch Toothpicks And Why Do South Koreans Eat Them PiPa News

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What Are Starch Toothpicks And Why Do South Koreans Eat Them

Last Updated: January 28, 2024, 11:00 IST

Authorities are warning people not to eat toothpicks. (Photo Credits: YouTube)

In South Korea, videos have emerged showing people frying or boiling toothpicks made of starch.

In South Korea, a different food trend with an unexpected ingredient is gaining traction through social media. Many videos circulating online depict people cooking toothpicks by boiling or stir-frying them. Colored toothpicks made from starch extracted from corn or sweet potatoes are commonly sold in restaurants and supermarkets in South Korea. These toothpicks are very different from the wooden toothpicks popular in India. People use starch-based toothpicks because they are more durable. However, the South Korean government is concerned about the growing trend of people eating it and the potential health risks.

On January 24, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety issued a warning warning and urging people not to eat or cook any kind of toothpicks. “Their safety as food has not been verified. Please don’t eat them,” the authority said in an X post.

Commenting on a video showing a man frying toothpicks transformed into a cute-looking shape, a YouTube user wrote, “The fact that u have to put warning labels on toothpicks that says “Do not eat” is scary. must go.” Another person wrote, “Look for toothpicks in South Korea. It is made from corn or potato starch and sorbitol, a fruit sugar alcohol. Green food coloring is often added. They are meant to be biodegradable without exactly being soluble. “

This isn’t the only weird and possibly dangerous food trend going viral on social media. In early 2018, the “Tide Pod Challenge” prompted people to eat Tide Pods, a laundry detergent product used in washing machines. The challenge resulted in several cases of poisoning. In response, Google and Facebook removed videos that featured this challenge.

A spokesperson from Procter & Gamble which makes Tide Pods said in a statement, “Nothing is more important to us than the safety of the people who use our products. Our laundry pacs are a highly concentrated detergent which is intended to clean clothes and it is used safely in millions of households every day. It should only be used to clean clothes and kept, closed, and away from children. We are always active in providing consumers with proper instructions for use and tools so they can use the product safely. They should not be played with, under any circumstances, even if it is meant as a joke.”

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