Night soil collectors typically visit the drains behind restaurants late at night to scoop up dregs of oil, which they filter and resell.
The government, which released the figures, has promised to take action against the practice. But since there are no laws against skimming oil from drains, police have had to release any suspects.
In April, a man was caught in broad daylight collecting oil at a sewer in Zhengzhou, Henan province, which he admitted intending to sell to street food vendors for 300 yuan a barrel.
Regulators are now searching for illegal oil recycling mills, and some health bureaus have begun releasing the names of restaurants and food establishments that were found to be using questionable oil.
Last November, regulators in southern China raided several workshops for turning discarded waste — possibly even sewage — into cooking oil.
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Maybe I should stop eating out in China.., lols.
For those that think this is an isolated incident, at last count, it's estimated more than 3 million tons (possibly metric, it isn't specified) is produced annually, and the industry is worth possibly billions of RMB.
A famous Chinese reporter was recently killed 1 month before his marriage for exposing the sewage oil scandal and refusing to back down.