Back Society » Health » FALSE: Street Vendor Caught Using Rat Meat in His Soup

FALSE: Street Vendor Caught Using Rat Meat in His Soup

Last week, a report entitled, “The shocking truth about hu tieu street vendors,” wherein a hu tieu vendor was caught using rat in his soups, spread like wildfire across Vietnam's social media networks. Immediately, many called the story's validity into question and enterprising journalists at Tuoi Tre took to the streets and found it to be a complete fabrication.

The story went something like this:


An unnamed journalist, who sometimes rides along with police patrols, witnessed a robber steal a necklace from woman on the street. A police chase ensued and the suspects were apprehended. But that was just the tip of the iceberg.

Trying to recover the necklace which was thrown by one of the robbers before his arrest, an officer followed up on a tip that it may have been thrown onto a nearby noodle cart.

When asked to remove the lid from his noodle pot, the vendor initially refused but eventually gave in when local police arrived. After lifting its top, they discovered 5 huge, dead, white rats.

The vendor admitted that he used rat meat in his soups and banh-gio for at least 4 years.


Finding it a bit unbelievable, Tuoi Tre began to fact-check each detail of the story. After talking to the police and vendors, their suspicions were confirmed and they determined that the story was a hoax.

While ultimitley untrue, the false report has damaged the reputation of street-side hu tieu vendors. One told Tuoi Tre that her sales had decreased from 50 to 35 bowls per day after the story broke. 

We guess the old adage, "any press is good press" doesn't apply here.


[Tuoi Tre // Photo via Matthieu Aubry]

Related Articles:

- Fake Rice Made with Plastic Has Alledgedly Made its Way to Vietnam

- Officials Slow to Act on Fake Coffee Sold in Saigon, Buon Ma Thuot

- 50 Media Outlets Fined Over Fish Sauce Scandals

Related Articles

in Health

300 Years to Clean up 800,000 Tons of Unexploded Ordinance in Vietnam: Official

At a conference on unexploded ordnance in Vietnam, an official announced that it may take up to 300 years to clear the country of the deadly war remnants that are still inflicting casualties to this d...

in Health

40% Of Pregnancies In Vietnam End In Abortion: Report

Vietnam’s defunct but lingering family planning policies, poor sex education programs and easy access to clinics has resulted in one of the highest abortion rates in the world, according to a recent r...

in Health

4K Turkey Dash For the Orphans @ The Crescent

On November 17, come down to the Crescent to join Transcend People’s 4k Turkey Dash for the Orphans and Operation Smile in Vietnam.

in Health

66% of Covid-19 Cases in Hanoi Are Asymptomatic, Health Officials Say

Hanoi officials have warned of increased risk of Covid-19 outbreaks, as it was reported that 66.6% of confirmed cases in the capital were found to be asymptomatic.

in Health

7 Reasons Why Vietnamese Food is Good for You

While you may have to watch out where you’re buying your produce in Vietnam, the cuisine itself is about as healthy you can get. The Huffington Post recently talked to the Vietnamese owners of Pho, a ...

in Health

After 5 Years, Boy Finally Has Battery Removed from Nose

Doctors in central Vietnam treated a 10-year-old boy in Tam Tri Da Nang General Hospital earlier this week for emitting “unpleasant odors” from his nose, according to Tuoi Tre.