A recent spot check on China's tea products has found that none of the products was contaminated by harmful chemicals.
The spot check was carried out among 80 kinds of tea products from 71 enterprises by the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Shenyang, Shijiazhuang, Xi'an, Changsha, Hangzhou, Nanjing and Ningbo.
No tea products were contaminated by excessive benzex or dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane (DDT), and pesticide residue in the products was under control, the spot check concluded.
Since pesticide residue in foods harms people's health, China banned the use of benzex and DDT in tea planting in 1972 and issued an overall ban in 1982.
However, the check discovered other problems with tea products. For example, 21.2 percent of the tea contained too much water, which causes the tea to deteriorate, and some producers overstated tea quality grade on packing.
China boasts the world's largest tea planting area with an annual tea production of about 700,000 tons.
(Xinhua News Agency June 16, 2003)