Good for Making Ratatouille?
Fri Apr 26, 8:17 AM ET
HANOI, Vietnam (AP) - More than 100 tons of rat meat is sold for human consumption each day in a southern Vietnamese province, an official said Friday.
The rat meat is sold to restaurants and hotels in southern Vietnam and to neighboring Cambodia, where it is prepared in various dishes, said the official from the Plants Protection Center for Southern Vietnam.
More than 50 dealers in Bac Lieu province buy at least 2 tons each of rodent meat each day from farmers, he said. Bac Lieu is about 1,250 miles south of the capital Hanoi.
The figure came from a recent survey conducted in the province by the center, which plans to carry out similar surveys in other southern provinces, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Between 1,000 and 2,000 farmers in the province are employed to hunt for rats. The meat is sold for 6,000 dong (39 cents) per kilogram (17 cents per pound), he said.
More than 150 million rats are killed each year in Vietnam.
Farmers have complained of an increasing vermin population in recent years, because the population of natural predators — cats and snakes — is shrinking because they are also served as food in restaurants and exported to China.