“Pure, soothing, and powerful” is our motto. We’ve been using quality, organic ingredients as much as possible. However, our product labels didn’t have USDA Organic Seal on them because our facility was not certified. Now, both of our warehouse and food processing facility are officially USDA certified organic. Most of our products now carry the USDA Organic Seal!
ORGANIC, Inside and Out
Providing products made with organic ingredients has been important to us especially because how we started this business. (Please read our story here if you haven’t.)
When we started our business, few people knew about green tea powder. Blessed with wonderful customers like you, we were able to explain we use organic ingredients (as stated in the product back labels) even though the front product label didn’t have the organic seal. Most of our customers were introduced to our products by word of mouth, or their doctors’ recommendation.
Why did we decide to invest our time, money, and energy to go through the process of certification now? I read the following report in one of my industry magazines and I felt it was high time to differentiate the look of our products from conventional teas, which are often contaminated with pesticides beyond imagination.
More and more pesticides are legalized
During the “World Green Tea Convention 2016” last fall, Peter Goggi, President of The Tea Association of the U.S.A., made a presentation about the U.S. tea market. In his presentation, he mentioned one of the biggest challenges is “regulation on pesticides.”
You would think The Association’s effort would be “to reduce or eliminate the pesticide residues on tea.” To our surprise, the effort is rather sorting “good” pesticides from harmful ones and legalizing more pesticides.
The Association is working hard to make some pesticides legal so that tea imported from overseas can enter the US market “without delay or trouble.”
According to him, there was no regulation on pesticide residues on conventional tea until 2008. (Conventional tea means ‘non-organic’ tea.) That year, three different pesticides were found in conventional tea shipments at entry and thirty containers of that tea were quarantined at the port. The Tea Association put together guidelines to prove the pesticides were not problematic and now these pesticides are legally permitted.
Nineteen more pesticides have been legalized since then and Mr. Goggi emphasized the association’s success is remarkable as no other agricultural products have been permitted to use that many pesticides during such a short time.
Furthermore, twelve additional different pesticides are currently being considered to be added to the list.
Although Mr. Goggi mentioned there is a list of pesticides that are strictly prohibited to bring into the U.S. market, there are some disturbing reports.
Loose pesticide measures in some countries
China and India are the first and second largest producers of tea. Greenpeace conducted tests on teas, and published a conclusive report in 2014. The brands tested were big brands, such as Twinings, Brooke Bond, Lipton, etc. Here are some shocking numbers they found:
60% of the Indian tea samples contained at least one pesticide above the safety limits set by the European Union. Generally speaking, their regulation is stricter than the U.S. standard–but it doesn’t matter because the contamination level was outrageous–more than half of those troublesome samples exceeded the maximum level by 50%. And, 68% of the samples even contained DDT.
67% of the Chinese samples were found to have the pesticides that have been banned under the Stockholm Convention, and about half of the samples from China contained pesticides that are known to harm unborn children or cause genetic damage!
Do not look further for your green tea–SEI MEE TEA offers the very best green tea in the industry and it is pesticide free. Please be reassured our products are pure, soothing, and powerful!
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