China destroys “substandard” Philippine bananas
Chinese Customs officials in the city of Shenzhen destroyed 34.78 tons of “substandard” Philippine bananas that were tainted by too much pesticide, state broadcaster CCTV reported Saturday.
CCTV said tests on the bananas showed that their carbendazim content exceeded the limits imposed by China on pesticide residue in food. The fruits were worth $33,000.
State TV said China would urge the Philippines to ensure the quality of the bananas it exports to China.
CCTV showed footage of a digger mashing the shipment and burying it in a landfill on Friday.
China is the Philippines’ fourth biggest export market after Japan, the United States and Hong Kong.
In March 2012, China stopped a shipment of Philippine bananas, claiming it had pests.
The tension between China and the Philippines has been rising due to the South China Sea dispute.
Trade Secretary Adrian Cristobal, in a statement read by Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr., said the P1.4-million shipment, which is composed only of two containers or 2,700 boxes, is “too small in terms of the overall Philippines-China trade relations.”
“The quantity is not unusual in as far as rejections are concerned in the normal course of business. It is also possible that the shipment was rejected due to levels of pesticides exceeding maximum residue limit,” Cristobal said.
Coloma said the destruction of the shipment is a “routine matter” in accordance with rules on sanitary and phytosanitary inspections of the World Trade Organization.