Eating durian can cause you to fail breathalyser test

An unnamed man was pulled over by police in Rudong County in the eastern Jiangsu province of China on 17 April 2019 for suspected drunk driving. Upon being pulled over, the man protested his innocence by claiming that he had just eaten durian.

Durian, also known as the king of fruits, can be widely found in the Southeast Asian country of Malaysia. Durian is infamous among  westerners for its strong smell but according to Malaysians, once you get hold of the taste, it’s hard to resist more and more of it.

The fruit has become a craze in China leading to an import deal with Malaysia a couple of years back.

The man who was pulled over, although he’s provided a skeptical excuse, was nonetheless adamant about his claim. This led to the officer, Yu Pengxiang, to proceed with a blood test to see if there was any connection between durian and breathalyser test.

To his surprise, the unnamed driver’s blood test proved his innocence, despite having tested over China’s strict 0.02% (20 mg per 100ml) blood alcohol limit (for comparison, in the US, for over-21s it’s 0.08%) on the breathalyser.

This of course left the officer puzzled and intrigued, which then led him carry out the test himself – fortunately, on camera – to see if eating durian fruit really does raise your blood alcohol level. As expected, he tested positive with a reading of 0.36!.

So, what’s going on? Does eating durian cause you to be drunk?

No. As it turns out, there are a lot of things that we regularly consume that can lead to the false positive reading on a breathalyser test.

These are items that contain trace alcohol amounts, including hot cross buns and white bread (thanks to the fermenting yeast), pecans, macadamias, ripe fruit, protein bars, mouth wash, and cough syrup.

In this case, the methyl group from the compound ethyl (2S)-2-methylbutanoate, is the likely culprit that landed this man in hot water.

However, don’t be hopeful that you could use this excuse anytime soon because this would only make blood test part of the screening process.

– HelloDoktor via Cyber-RT

Virgin taste of ‘Musang King’ durian in Malaysia (video)

KUALA LUMPUR, 16 July 2022:

On a posting to Malaysia since mid-2021 at the British High Commission in Malaysia, second secretary James Taylor had one item to be ticked off his bucket list – learning to taste for the first time ever and possible learn to enjoy the infamous Malaysian durian.

Having arrived last year while strict restrictions still applied to contain the Covid-19 virus spread, it was only with the latest durian season that he found the opportunity to sample this ‘King of Fruits’.

Attending a durian buffet extravaganza at the Pavilion Bukit Jalil mall here, James agreed to have his virgin tasting to be recorded for posterity – and to better tantalise his palate, he was offered the most sumptuous ‘Musang King’ variety.

The video recording below clearly shows his initial reaction, but James was equally game to partake further durians later on at Malaysia’s first International Durian & Cultural Fest 2022 – a two-day event organised by Duricious Sdn Bhd (better known by its Dking branding).

Also read: DKing launches durian buffet as tourism lure

Malaysia offers durian-themed tour packages

GEORGE TOWN, 15 July 2022 (Bernama):

Tourism Malaysia aims to sell 500 to 600 Durian Farm Tour Packages from July 1 to Aug 31, said its director-general Datuk Zainuddin Abdul Wahab.

He said the tour packages are available in the northern states and the ministry has targeted returns of over RM100,000 for tour operators participating in the programme.

“Among the packages on offer are the 2 Days 1 Night Package starting from RM290 per person and the 3 Days 2 Nights Package starting from RM388 per person with a minimum booking of four people each package.

“To boost sales, Tourism Malaysia is also offering a 10% discount to buyers,” he told reporters after officiating at the 2022 Durian Tour Package campaign here today.

He said the programme was aimed at reviving marketing and promotion of domestic tourism apart from helping durian orchard operators and it was also seen to be able to contribute to the local economy.

Zainuddin said to make the campaign a success, Tourism Malaysia had collaborated with five tour operators in developing the tour packages that combined elements of ecotourism, agro-tourism, archeotourism and extreme adventure.

He said the five operators are Kurma Travel and Tours Sdn Bhd, Adventure360 Tours Sdn Bhd, Time Free Vacation Sdn Bhd, M.Maha-Izah Transport and Tours Sdn Bhd and Asia Gateway Tours.

More information on the tour packages can be obtained through the Tourism Malaysia website at

Zainuddin said the ministry hoped that more tour operators from other parts of the country would also offer such packages.

– courtesy of Tourism Malaysia

DKing launches durian buffet as tourism lure

PETALING JAYA, 12 July 2022:

Local fruits retailer Durious Sdn Bhd, better known by its branding as DKing, is aiming to tap the exotic appeal of durians to lure both domestic and international tourists to sample this avowed King of the Fruits.

It is conducting the first ever International Durian & Cultural Fest 2022 at Pavilion Bukit Jalil this weekend, when it is prepared to host around 3,000 aficionados over two days – July 16 and 17.

DKing founder Leron Yee said the RM88 all-you-can-eat durian buffet will be conducted on an hourly basis with a cap of 300 participants for each session. “We will offer at least three different varieties of quality durians, but for that price, we have to admit not being able to offer the ‘Musang King’ variety though.”

Even so, he described the buffet as a steal, noting durian prices have been on an uptrend recently. “For this event, we’re also expecting many international travellers, especially from East Asia. That’s why we’re grateful for Tourism Malaysia’s support in promoting this event.”

Tourism Malaysia senior deputy director Rosnah Mustafah confirmed the support, noting that the national agency has seen strong interest from Hong Kong – where the local durian pricing is so high that it is cheaper to eat the fruit fresh in Malaysia, even after factoring in travel costs.

“We have successfully promoted tour packages around durian feasts, where tourists from Hong Kong spend several days in Malaysia and also enjoy many other attractions our country has to offer.”

Yee said this weekend’s event is also aimed at wooing tourists from further abroad, noting that Australia has become the second largest durian export destination for Malaysia.

“While Thailand and Indonesia also have durians to offer, many consumers say Malaysian durians are the best tasting. We’re conducting this event to let consumers enjoy local durians plus other fruits we have plenty of in Malaysia, and hope to have it as an annual celebration.”

Mardi pushing for more mass farming of new durian hybrids

KUALA KANGSAR, 10 July 2020:

The Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (Mardi) is encouraging durian farmers to cultivate the MDUR 78, MDUR 79 and MDUR 88 hybrid durians which have high marketing potential.

These three hybrids were developed by Mardi researchers.

Horticultural Research Center director Dr Johari Sarip said the three clone varieties are a cross between D24 and D10 variants. They are favoured by local durian enthusiasts – especially the MDUR 88, which has an attractive golden-yellow coloured flesh that is slightly sticky with a sweet and creamy flavour.

“We have been working together with the Department of Agriculture to enable farmers to cultivate high quality and viable high durian variants that are on par with the Musang King.

“We are also providing consulting services to farmers and encourage them to plant more than two clones of durian to avoid diseases,” he said at Duriotourism Park in Mardi Kuala Kangsar here, recently.

Dr Johari said Mardi was founded in 1959 and since the early 1970s, has been actively conducting research to develop cross-breeds from D24 and D10 which have a higher resistance to durian diseases such as root borer invertebrates.

“We have produced over 10,000 new hybrid prototypes and have bred three very promising new clones, namely the MDUR 78 (D188) and MDUR 79 (D189) in 1990 as well as MDUR 88 (D190) in 1992.”

He said Mardi is planning to expand its cultivation area for the new clones to produce more yields and compete internationally.

In addition, he said the institute will intensify its research and development (R&D) aspects, including on the proper fertilisation of durian clones, climate change and irrigation to ensure yields with high quality.

“Studies on durians are important because we need high-quality durians to penetrate the local and export markets as the durian export trends to Singapore, Indonesia, China, Hong Kong, Australia and the United Kingdom have increased by up to RM92 million a year.”

On the Mardi Duriotourism Park Kuala Kangsar, Dr Johari said the 21ha property has over 20 durian clones – including durian hutan (forest durian) and over 1,000 durian trees.

Meanwhile, Duriotourism manager Abu Zarim Ujang said they offer online selling services for fruits from the park during the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) period.

He said the fruits offered consist of various varieties of durian clones as well as mangosteens, while the package price starts from as low as RM30 to RM200 depending on its weight.

Abu Zarim said visitors can tour the park on a tram while being briefed by the staff on durian cultivation as well as enjoy the king of fruits.

The Duriotourism Kuala Kangsar is open from 9am to 6pm daily while the entrance fees are RM50 for adults, RM18 (children) and RM35 (senior citizens) for Malaysian citizens, while the fees for non-citizens are RM70 (adults), RM50 (children) and RM40 for senior citizens.

– Bernama via Cyber-RT

Are durians actually healthy?

KUALA LUMPUR, 20 June 2022:

As the King of Fruits, the durian is also known to cause a great divide among Malaysians because of its taste, smell and high fat content.

But contrary to popular belief, Grab Malaysia said in a statement: “Our favourite thorny fruit is packed with health benefits you may not have known – here’s some of them to help break the stigma!”

Sinful yet surprisingly nutritious

Although some of us love to overindulge come durian season, durians can feel “jelak” to most if we have too much of it (or anything for that matter) – one of the reasons the durian has gained a reputation for being unhealthy.

But really, they are filled with nutrients too! For example, durian contains a high amount of healthy fats, just like avocados, that helps our bodies absorb vitamins such as vitamin A, D, E, and K. Like everything else though, it should still be taken in moderation.

High blood pressure? You might need more durian

Other than being full of healthy fats, durians are also an excellent source of potassium. Potassium-rich foods are important in managing high blood pressure, which is a major contributor to cardiovascular disease.

Potassium also helps to ease tension in your blood vessel walls, which further helps to lower blood pressure. Take care of your heart with a healthy dose of Malaysia’s favourite spiky fruit!

Feeling pain in your joints? Have a durian or two

Durian contains more Vitamin C than many other tropical fruits. This is especially important because Vitamin C is the “hero of heroes” when it comes to vitamins.

A deficiency of Vitamic C can lead to joint pain and an adequate intake has been connected with a reduced risk of cancer-related pain. More reasons to end durian distancing and have a ken-durian with your family.

Need help with that bowel movement?

Besides containing plenty of fibre to help with you-know-what, durians are rich in natural sugars that ferment after being exposed to gut bacteria during digestion. This acts as a prebiotic, feeding the many tiny bacteria in your gut, supporting digestive functions and colon health.

Durian facts:

  • The original Musang King durian tree is believed to be from the district of Gua Musang in Kelantan (hence its name… Musang King)
  • D24 durians are also known as “Sultan” durians as they were traditionally reserved for royalty due to its limited availability back in the day.
  • Red Prawn durians were named after the flesh’s curved shape and light pink hue, reminiscent of a cooked red prawn.
  • The most expensive local durian variety is not the Musang King, but the Black Thorn. Its price is known to exceed RM100/kg compared to Musang King’s RM70/kg.