Monday, March 26, 2012

How to detect adulterated tea, coffee and sugar

Most Indians trapped in the quicksand of corruption and mis- governance to do not give a second thought to the unprecedented adulteration of food taking place. There are no reliable estimates of the number of deaths caused directly due to food adulteration in India.; this is simply because most of these cases go undetected. The number of such deaths is bound to be mind boggling and shocking if known.

I have tried to give some simple tests to detect adulterated tea, coffee and sugar.

Tea is normally adulterated using re-colored used tea. There is a simple test to detect if the tea has been adulterated. Take a blotting paper, wet it by sprinkling some water over it and then sprinkle the tea powder over it.

If you come across yellow, orange or red spots on the blotting paper, then the tea has been adulterated by using artificial color. Pure tea leaves release color only when they are put into boiling water.

The most common form of Coffee adulteration is through the use of powdered tamarind seeds. Pure coffee will always float on the water, if there are powdered tamarind seeds, they will sink to the bottom.

Powdered Sugar
Powdered sugar is normally adulterated through the use of washing soda. To test powdered sugar, add a few drops of Hydrochloric acid to it; if it foams then it has been adulterated.

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