Download our Supermarket Ranking 2011 infographic.
According to our recent studies, most produce found at five supermarkets in China contain residues of one or more pesticides, and in some cases, these pesticides are either banned or the amount of residues exceeds legal limits. In November, Greenpeace randomly purchased 35 samples of fruits and vegetables from five supermarkets in Beijing, Chengdu and Guangzhou. Of the 35 samples, all but five contained pesticide residues.
"With so many pesticides, it might seem impossible to find safe food," said Greenpeace food and agriculture campaigner Wang Jing. "It's difficult, but not impossible. Which is why Greenpeace has put together a guide for consumers to help them avoid supermarkets that sell dangerous food."
The guide, released in December, can be downloaded here (in Chinese). It lists Carrefour and Auchan supermarkets as the best in the country for their transparency and for their efforts to ensure the least hazardous pesticides are used on the produce they buy. Tesco and Ito Yokado ranked as the worst for their obstinacy to change year after year.
"Consumers have a great weapon in the fight for safe food – choice," Wang said. "If we choose not to buy unsafe food, then supermarkets won't sell them."
The ranking criteria included:
- Use of non-genetic engineering food
- Banning of the worst pesticides
- Traceability and quality control
- Supplier management and testing systems
- Information disclosure
2011 Greenpeace Supermarket Ranking in China: (best to worst)
3. Shanghai City
6. Ito Beijing
8. Lianhua (Hualian, Century Mart)
13. Aeon (North), Jusco (South), PARKnSHOP, Jingkelong, Rtmart, Suguo
14. Ito Yokado, Chengdu, Tesco
For e-mail updates on safeguarding food and agriculture: subscribe here.