‘Save gas’: China’s heatwave ‘cooks’ live shrimp in a bag of water on the way home from the supermarket

An extreme heat wave in China caused live shrimp bought from a supermarket to be ‘cooked’ alive in the bag it was brought home in due to the high temperatures.

On Saturday, a woman, surnamed Fang, from Xinyang in central China’s Henan Province, discovered the dead shellfish in their water-filled bag less than an hour after purchase.

She bought the prawns around 9 a.m. and returned home less than an hour later. Several had turned bright red as if cooked in boiling water as the temperature reached 41 degrees Celsius that day.

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“When I bought them, they were very fresh – all of them were alive,” Fang told Bailu Video.

“It was probably hot weather. Once I put the bag on the ground which was burning. I also put them in the back seat of my e-bike and it was boiling hot at the time.

“In this kind of weather, it’s best to try not to go out…it’s best to stay in a room with air conditioning.”

The dead shrimp video report was among the most searched items on China’s most popular search engine, Baidu, on Tuesday, as cities across China, especially those in the south, suffered a continued heat wave .

“They are cooked, no need to add oil. You also save gas to heat them. You just eat them when you get home,” said a commenter on Weibo.

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“It is possible that the shrimp were cooked after being exposed to hot weather. With an average temperature of 41 degrees, the Earth’s surface could reach 60 to 70 degrees. The back seat of an e-bike could also be hot,” another person commented.

Southern China is experiencing unusually high temperatures, with many cities reporting average temperatures of 38 degrees. The country’s largest river, the Yangtze, and the two largest freshwater lakes, the Poyang and the Dongting, recorded their lowest water levels in six decades.

A woman uses a fan as she wears a cloth that protects her from the sun on a street amid a heatwave warning in Shanghai.  Photo: Reuters

On Tuesday, China’s National Meteorological Center issued a high-temperature red alert, the highest level in its weather warning system, for eight provinces.

Sichuan, Chongqing, Shaanxi, Hubei, Jiangxi and Zhejiang provinces have been warned to expect the mercury to rise to 40 degrees or more.

In Chongqing, one of the cities hardest hit by the intense heat, 51 rivers have dried up and 24 reservoirs currently have no water.

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