‘White Rabbit’ may cause illness, death

Isabelle Pinard

”The Lunar New Year is celebrated with fireworks, traditional dances, and plenty of food, but this year the most popular sweets will be banned from the United Sates because of health concerns.

White Rabbit candy, which has been exported to Chinatowns around the world since 1943, has tested positive melamine, an industrial chemical used to make plastics and fertilizer, according to health officials in Singapore and Hong Kong. Melamine is present in both the edible rice paper that is wrapped around White Rabbit candy and in the candy’s milky base.

Melamine has also been detected in baby formula in China causing nearly 53,000 children to fall ill and killing four others.

Although this brand of Chinese-made candy is off limits, many other Asian style candies can be used as substitutes. Pocky sticks, prez, Yan Yan, fruit gummies, rice crackers and chocolate filled biscuits can be found in the Ichiban Kan store in Japantown, grocery stores in Chinatown and the Hong Kong Supermarket.