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A Bite of China III makes iron wok a hit

(People's Daily Online)    14:14, February 24, 2018

The iron wok made in east China’s Shandong province went viral overnight after a popular food-themed documentary started broadcasting last Monday, Jinan Times reported on Friday.

A Bite of China, a documentary which explores the relationship between Chinese people and food, returned for its third season during the lunar New Year holiday, and the first episode makes a variety of cookware used in Chinese cooking a hit, including the famous iron wok.

Many viewers said they plan to buy such a mirror-like handcrafted wok made through complicated means. A large number of locals and visitors swarmed into the showcase store in Jinan to buy an iron wok that was featured in the episode, or to see how the famous wok is made.

According to the current statistics, almost 3,000 woks were sold on Monday night. Up to now, the store owned by Liu Zimu, one of the inheritors of the iron wok, has received over 100,000 orders, half of which are from overseas.

It’s a rare chance to make a fortune, but Liu declined all these orders for the sake of quality and reputation. Moreover, he made an announcement Thursday night, calling for rational consumption among customers and warning that an overheated market could lead to unhealthy developments in the industry.

Liu hopes to pass the techniques down to the next generation and continues to make every iron wok a high quality one. To this end, Liu and his fellows are preparing an association, according to Jinan Times.

Zhangqiu, what is now a municipal district in the east of Jinan, capital of Shandong province, used to be a center for iron smelting during the ancient Han Dynasty (202BC-220).

The time-honored wok forging technique was impacted by machine manufacturing about 20 years before, but it was revived in recent years under the perseverant efforts of a group of old craftsmen and passionate young people. Now, the hit documentary is further stimulating the spread and inheritance of this fine craftsmanship.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Bianji, Hongyu)

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