With annual sales of tens of billions and nearly 100 million people eating it, why is this “snack” that disfigures people and cancer is getting more and more popular?

Betel nut add smoke, the mana is boundless.
Betel nut with wine is immortal.

This common saying circulated in the streets and alleys shows the "sacred status" of betel nut in people's hearts. That is, such a small black fruit, like an addictive "chronic drug", makes ordinary people obsessed and sickened.

▲The picture is from the documentary "The Death of Betel Nut", "The Face-cutting Man in the Betel Nut Kingdom" reported that those patients who were obsessed with betel nut and suffered from oral cancer, they could only cut off their tongues, cut off the gums, cut their faces to save their lives, or survived, or Towards death.

Recently, the news of Guangzhou Outdoor's complete suspension of betel nut advertisements has been hotly searched. The Guangzhou Municipal Market Supervision Bureau has made it clear that from March 18, the city's media and outdoor advertisements have begun to completely ban the publication of betel nut advertisements.

▲The picture is partly from Guangdong Broadcasting Station-DV live video screenshot

But for betel nuts, which do more harm than good, calling a stop is just the beginning.

After all, how many people like to chew betel nuts, more people will bitter betel nuts for a long time.

Tentacles of ubiquitous "betel nut"

At the beginning of this year, betel nut advertisements began to sweep all public areas in Guangzhou.

▲The picture is partly from Guangdong Broadcasting Station-DV live video screenshot

The bus is printed with Hunan Zhang Xinfa's betel nut advertisement, and the bus shelter is the main "high-end betel nut" Hecheng Tianxia. On the subway, not only the text on the display screen scrolls the betel nut advertisement, but there is even a voice announcement:

Hecheng Tianxia reminds you that the terminal of this train is…

▲The picture is partly from Guangdong Broadcasting Station-DV live video screenshot

Not only that, in Guangzhou's highways, taxis and other places, betel nut advertisements can be seen everywhere. It grows raging like weeds, all over those places that you can hear with your eyes closed.

These advertisements vigorously promote the history, taste and quality of betel nut, but no one tells people that betel nut is harmful to health .

As early as 2003, the International Cancer Research Center under the World Health Organization had identified betel nut as a first-degree carcinogen.

However, whether betel nut is clearly carcinogenic has been questioned, and the medical community has been verifying this.

Some examples that can be clearly known are:

  • In 2011, the "Chinese Journal of Stomatological Research" published a study stating that among the countries and regions where betel nut chewing is popular, the incidence of oral cancer is among the top;
  • In 2017, Xiangya Hospital of Central South University announced that the number of patients with oral cancer induced by betel nut in Hunan has increased for 12 consecutive years, and the number of oral cancer cases has increased by 7 times;
  • The country that consumes the most betel nut in the world is India, where the incidence of oral cancer ranks first in the world.

Frequent chewing of betel nut can cause oral ulcers, degeneration of the gums, submucosal fibrosis, and then cause oral cancer.

Betel nut has obvious correlation with cancers and diseases such as pharyngeal cancer, laryngeal cancer, and esophageal cancer.

At present, Guangzhou has offline more than 70 "Hechengtianxia" bus shelter advertisements , 19 "Xiangtan Shop" bus body advertisements, "Zhang Xinfa" bus body advertisements 150, and "Taste King" bus body advertisements 100.

Stopping betel nut advertising is a small step in betel nut management and control, and it is also a new step in slowing down people's consumption of betel nut.

But at present it is difficult to affect the "barbaric growth" of betel nuts.

Nowadays, all kinds of betel nuts can be bought anytime, anywhere, and at anytime, anywhere, in large and small shops, supermarkets, restaurants, KTVs, and Internet cafes. They are always in the most conspicuous places, lest people passing by will miss the opportunity to place orders.

A few years ago, betel nut enterprises frequently appeared in the TV Spring Festival Gala and film and television works, and the betel nut culture gradually became popular among the people.

Whether you are an elderly person at home or an elite student, you cannot escape the audiovisual baptism of betel nut. At the 2018 Lantern Festival Joy Party of Hunan Satellite TV, the host of the betel nut advertisement directly praised:

(It can) make you refreshed and rejuvenated all at once.

Finally, in 2019, a ban made all betel nut advertisements off the shelves, but the betel nut companies have been wildfire.

They are eyeing short video platforms, online dramas, and variety shows, and continue to spare no effort to promote the benefits of betel nut, trying to "encircle and suppress" the wallets of a new group of young people.

Betel nut does have the effect of relieving fatigue and refreshing, but what is puzzling is that in recent years, betel nut has also launched health betel nut such as "Goji betel nut", "Ginseng betel nut" and "Xylitol betel nut" in order to fit the health trend. "

Marketing tactics are one set after another, but neither treat the symptoms nor the root cause.

Chinese wolfberry, American ginseng, and xylitol, does it have anything to do with the carcinogenicity of betel nut?

Betel nut is an invisible "infectious agent"

Betel nut itself is a chronic addictive food.

The arecoline contained in it is an addictive chemical substance similar to nicotine, which can make people excited and mentally active, but at the same time, it is also the main cause of oral cancer.

I remember that when I ate betel nut for the first time, my face was flushed, my body was hot, my chest was tight and dizzy, like a throat. My friend chewed the betel nut vigorously and said, "Many people eat like this for the first time, and they will fall in love when they get used to it." He looked at the teeth later and seemed to have spent a lot of money, but I never tasted it again. NS.

But chewing betel nut is already a habit of many people, and betel nut is also recognized as a "soft drug" all over the world.

Unlike other "addiction" foods, it is also good at making people psychologically addictive.

You may have read this news : A man spent 15 yuan on betel nuts, but he won 11 packs in a row. The man said, "I'm sorry":

I really don't want to dismantle it anymore.

This is the "sales magic weapon" that prevails in the betel nut industry: another pack.

No one can get rid of the joy of winning a lottery like buying a lottery ticket, and it is much easier than buying a lottery ticket. The winning rate is extremely high. After you get one pack, there is another pack, which is inexhaustible.

In the early years, betel nuts cost only a few yuan per pack. Nowadays, betel nuts for twenty to thirty yuan a pack are everywhere, which has increased the attractiveness of this way of winning.

More and more betel nuts can't be eaten by themselves, they will be distributed to friends and neighbors on the road, and they will be taken home and distributed to wives and children.

Betel nut brands take root in the masses, and have a lot of experience in this kind of people-friendly and stimulating promotion method.

The king of tastes, a unicorn company that occupies 70% of the betel nut market. In 2018, he engaged in an event to buy betel nuts to give gold rings . A neighbor won the gold ring. The news was publicized in the streets and alleys, and it quickly caused a rush. .

Behind this also hides a unique social culture of betel nut.

Betel nut is particularly popular in southern my country, especially in Hunan. The locals like to "make friends with betel nut," and it has become a "hardcore" social product.

People can chew a piece of betel nut anytime and anywhere. When they go out, they say "hanging hands, walk down the street, buy betel nuts, and make friends." When they get married, the guests shouted, "Bridal betel nuts have two ends, and I don't want two mouthfuls. I want five sons to enroll in science." When singing folk songs, I would also sing "The more you chew the betel nut, the more vigorous you chew, the mouth is out, the mouth is in, making friends and making friends on the garden platform, to avoid the plague and appetite and relieve the oiliness."

In this context, men, women and children all love to chew betel nuts. Family and friends are chewing betel nuts. Sometimes they don’t eat betel nuts, but they seem uncomfortable. Betel nuts are no longer just a food, but a carrier of people's life and social life.

▲ Old people whose teeth have turned black after chewing on betel nuts for a long time

From the exciting and addictive characteristics of betel nut, to its ubiquitous publicity, hype close to the craze, marketing methods to expand sales, and the unique culture behind it, betel nut has changed from an "addict" to An "infectious agent".

The unstoppable "betel nut kingdom"

The harm of betel nut is invisible, slow and subtle.

People often put betel nut, tobacco, and alcohol together, but people are conscious of the harm of tobacco and alcohol, and have a precautionary psychology. At the same time, tobacco and alcohol are also regulated by certain rules , but the harmful characteristics of betel nut make people used to ignore Compared with the publicity of betel nut, the publicity on its harm is far from enough.

Many people use fluke to enjoy the desire to speak, thinking that they will not win the lottery, so they will not get oral cancer, but in fact, this is the same as buying betel nuts. Everyone who places an order for this is easy. Open "One more bag."

At the same time, betel nut is slowly expanding from the past regional consumption to a wider market.

According to Beijing Business Daily , in 2020, the number of cities covered by a betel nut brand will increase to 596, a year-on-year increase of 30%. Marketing outlets include Guangdong, Jiangxi, Guizhou, Henan and other provinces across the country.

There are nearly 100 million betel nut consumers, and the annual sales of betel nut are tens of billions . Behind the betel nut is a huge industrial chain. Data shows that the betel nut industry is still developing at a high speed. The flavor king betel nut alone will have a continuous performance increase of more than 30% in 2019 and 2020.

In Xiangtan, where the betel nut processing industry is developed, nearly 60% of residents chew betel nuts . Betel nut has become a city card. Hunan is also the largest betel nut processing and consumption base in the Mainland.

Behind the betel nut is a complex network of people's livelihood, economy, and culture. The betel nut industry has become a local "money printing machine." Commercial operations and huge output have made the folk culture more popular with betel nut, which in turn has allowed companies to continue to increase their productivity…

This is an endless loop with contradictions that are difficult to resolve for the time being.

If it is not possible to quickly resist the decree, at least certain restrictions must be imposed.

This time, it is forbidden to spread outdoor betel nut advertisements because it cannot guide everyone to eat betel nut. Conversely, the real publicity to be done is of a public welfare nature, so that everyone can realize that betel nut is harmful to health and chewing will cause cancer.

In addition, there are many things that can be done. For example, businesses should prohibit the exaggeration of the effects of betel nuts in the promotion. The popularization of oral cancer education science should also be vigorously promoted among the whole people…

In "The Face-cut Man in the Betel Nut Kingdom," after Liu Sangguo "cut his face" due to oral cancer, he said:

If my life comes back again, I will never eat betel nut.

This is what we can do.

#Welcome to follow Aifaner's official WeChat account: Aifaner (WeChat ID: ifanr), more exciting content will be provided to you as soon as possible.

Ai Faner | Original link · View comments · Sina Weibo