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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Adulteration of Regular Rice with Plastic Rice Made in China

Verdict :

Possible time of origin : March, 2015

Circulation platforms : Web, Social media

Circulation geography : Africa, Asia

Original Message Version Under Analysis:
Warning! Potentially deadly fake plastic rice from China now circulating Asia and other countriesFor the past years, China has been accused for producing and selling many fake products including food. This latest news about fake food from China is quite shocking though - fake rice made out of plastic! Yes, they are now selling fake plastic rice and it is very hard to distinguish when mixed with ordinary rice. News reports suggested that the grains were made by mixing potatoes with industrial synthetic resin. There were also rumors of the “cheap but profitable” rice being exported to other Asian countries, including Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, and India.When raw, the rice is supposedly hard to distinguish, but when cooked - a plastic film forms on top of the rice which can be burnt when heated. According to some victims, the said rice remains hard even when cooked. Health experts are warning people that these grains, if consumed, could cause serious damage to our health.

Analysis by Merofact Awareness Team:

Message post on fake rice is circulating all over social media like facebook, twitter, whatsapp etc. People are shocked and spreading this shocking news about fake rice so that it can reach to every people. How ever this allegation is yet to be proved. Rice oriented website Oryza reported on this issue as early as March 12, 2015.  Around July 8, 2015 Times of India, IBN Live and The Hindu reported that the Delhi high court agreed to hear a plea alleging that rice made out of plastic, imported from China, was being sold in the country. This news brought attention of the social media extensively. A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath will hear the plea alleging that the "plastic rice" was being sold by mixing it with real rice, on August 20, 2015. We'll let you know more about the issue after that. 

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Authenticate Drug / Medicine by Sending SMS to +91 9901099010

Verdict :

Possible time of origin : August, 2010

Circulation platforms : Web, Social Media

Circulation geography : India

Original Message Version Under Analysis:
This is very useful to everyone.....In India if at anytime you are worried that medicine is fake or counterfeit, you can test it by sending a 10 digit code as an SMS to 9901099010 and receive a reply back as to whether the drug is authentic.
 Whenever a unit of medicine is produced at the factory, it is labeled with a unique code provided by PharmaSecure. When you purchase a medicine you can send this code, which is printed on the package, to 9901099010 and receive an SMS, which tells you if the medicine is genuine and provides you with a batch number, expiration, and other drug information.

Analysis by Merofact Awareness Team:

The message above is mostly true in Indian context. US based initiative PharmaSecure brought this unique and very helpful service for the people. Though not all medicines yet have this authentication code. Few pharmaceutical companies already tied up with PharmaSecure to print the alphanumeric "authentication code" along with Expiry date and MRP on the pills packaging. One can send the code via SMS to +91 9901099010, within minutes they'll receive a SMS mentioning the authenticity of the medicine. This service is still functional. Though calling the numbers don't work anymore, neither visiting the website This website is also mentioned in some news / blog portal but we found that to be parked webpage. 
We truly appreciate the effort by PharmaSecure, like many other including Interpol.