There's nothing more glamorous than running a restaurant – but there's also nothing more difficult. For restaurateurs trying to earn their piece of the pie, the New York food scene is a ruthless, cutthroat jungle where the stakes are high, the margins are razor thin, and success is hard to come by. In a new primetime docu-series, Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business, CNBC takes viewers behind–the-scenes of five very different restaurants in the ultra-competitive New York food scene, chronicling their every struggle and occasional triumph.

The 8 one-hour episodes will follow five businesses at a crossroads, fighting for their piece of a multi-billion dollar industry: famed NYC hotspot and budding empire The Meatball Shop; Melba's, a Harlem comfort food restaurant and neighborhood joint with national ambitions; Ann & Tony's, a multi-generational restaurant in the Bronx that's struggling to fill seats ─ and preserve its family legacy; Vermilion, an upscale restaurant hoping to win over the critical NY food press with an expensive re-launch; and Seamore's, a bold, but risky new seafood restaurant launching this summer.

Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business - Netflix

Type: Reality

Languages: English

Status: Ended

Runtime: 60 minutes

Premier: 2015-05-13

Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business - Gutter oil - Netflix

Gutter oil (Chinese: 地沟油; pinyin: dìgōu yóu, or 餿水油; sōushuǐ yóu) is a term used in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan to describe illicit cooking oil which has been recycled from waste oil collected from sources such as restaurant fryers, grease traps, slaughterhouse waste and sewage from sewer drains.

Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business - Health effects - Netflix

Gutter oil has been shown to be quite toxic, and can cause diarrhea and abdominal pain. There are also reports that long-term consumption of the oil can lead to stomach and liver cancer as well as developmental disabilities in newborns and children. Testing of some samples of gutter oil has revealed traces of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), dangerous organic pollutants capable of causing cancer with long-term consumption. There is also potential for gutter oil to contain aflatoxins, highly carcinogenic compounds produced by certain molds. Zeng Jing of the Guangdong Armed Police Hospital said of gutter oil: “Animal and vegetable fat in refined waste oil will undergo rancidity, oxidation and decomposition after contamination, and produce toxic substances such as arsenic. It will cause indigestion, insomnia, liver discomfort and other symptoms.”

Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business - References - Netflix