Chinese Herbs

Elixir of Health or Pesticide Cocktail?

1 comment
Publication - 2013-06-26
This report shows that Chinese herbal products were covered in pesticide residues considered highly hazardous by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Some of the residue levels were hundreds of times higher than EU food safety standards. The herbal products tested include wolfberries, honeysuckle, Sanqi flowers, chrysanthemum and were purchased from nine stores, such as Tongrentang and Yunnanbaiyao, in nine cities across China between August 2012 and April 2013. Nine samples showed more than 20 different kinds of pesticide residues.

This report shows that Chinese herbal products were covered in pesticide residues considered highly hazardous by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Some of the residue levels were hundreds of times higher than EU food safety standards.

The herbal products tested include wolfberries, honeysuckle, Sanqi flowers, chrysanthemum and were purchased from nine stores, such as Tongrentang and Yunnanbaiyao, in nine cities across China between August 2012 and April 2013. Nine samples showed more than 20 different kinds of pesticide residues.

The use of pesticides in Chinese agriculture continues to rise by about 3% every year. Currently, the country uses almost 2 million tons of pesticides in its agriculture annually. About 70% of these pesticides wash away into the environment and end up as hazardous pollution in water, soil, and the atmosphere. As residues, some of them find their way into the food people eat, increasing health risks.

Unfortunately, this situation is only the tip of the iceberg of a much bigger problem: the general failure of chemical-intensive agriculture to feed people safely, while preventing environmental degradation.

This report from Greenpeace summarizes the findings of an investigation looking at key actors in Chinese agriculture: local farmers, traders, and employees at processing plants. It details the results from pesticide testing of 65 Chinese herbal products, including wolfberries, honeysuckle, Sanqi flowers and chrysanthemum, which were purchased from nine retail chains in nine different cities across China between August 2012 and April 2013.

Download the report: 

Chinese Herbs: Elixir of Health or Pesticide Cocktail

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Peter James says:

This was a great written article, i got a lot of good information from it. Did anyone else find this helpful as i did?

peterjames23 | ...

Posted 2014-01-24 at 7:53 Flag abuse Reply

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