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A center under China"s top health authority apologized for publishing an article claiming that a product made from donkey hides, traditionally believed to have medicinal benefits, is not worth buying.
The product, called ejiao, is a gelatin used in traditional Chinese medicine and is regarded as having positive effects, including helping rejuvenate the skin and relieve fatigue.
In an article published last week by 12320 Management Center - a hotline health service center under the National Health and Family Planning Commission - on its microblog account, it said ejiao is nothing but donkey hide cooked in water, and the main portion is composed of collagen protein, which is not even a nutritious or medicinally beneficial protein.
The center published a statement on the account on Monday in which it said the article was created by others, and apologized for forwarding it. It said the center failed to inspect the article carefully, resulting in confusion among the general public.
The statement said the center will improve its oversight in the future to provide better health information. It deleted the article before publishing the statement.
The statement was followed by more than 6,300 comments as of Tuesday, with many supporting the critical article. Others said ejiao does indeed have beneficial effects.
Ejiao has been the source of much controversy over the past few years, and the price of the product has soared. It is recognized as a TCM drug by the China Food and Drug Administration, with effects such as providing nutrition, stopping bleeding and increasing energy.
The price of the ejiao made by some companies ranged from 130 yuan ($20.60) per kilogram in 2001 to 5,400 yuan per kilogram in 2016, because of increased demand. The price is expected to go higher, according to a report in International Financial News.
Ruan Guangfeng, a nutritionist at the China Food Information Center, a nongovernmental organization, told the newspaper that the effects of ejiao have been exaggerated, and that pork, which is much cheaper, can also produce the effects claimed by the product.cotton bracelets personalised wristbands wristband 24 wristbands printable wristbands