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Legislature wants stricter quality control of agricultural products

(chinadaily.com.cn) Updated : 2018-10-25

Legislature wants stricter quality control of agricultural products
Aerial photo taken on Oct 11, 2018 shows farmers airing newly-harvested grains in Ganzhou district of Zhangye city, Northwest China's Gansu province. [Photo/Xinhua]

The top legislature on Wednesday called for tightened measures to better ensure the quality of agricultural products in China, as a four-month-long inspection found progresses but also problems in the sector.

A national survey on soil pollution should be completed by the end of the year to figure out the detailed areas and distribution of polluted cultivated land, as well as its impact on the quality of agricultural products, according to a report released by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

The report said currently, 2.9 percent of the country’s total cultivated land is medium or heavy polluted, and the situation is getting worse in certain areas. The lack of information on the detailed distribution of such land has made management and ecological restoration difficult.

Legislators suggested that no edible agricultural plants should be cultivated on the heavily polluted land, and companies that illegally discharge heavy metal pollutants must be severely punished.

The top legislature conducted an inspection on the implementation of the Quality and Safety Law of Agricultural Products from May to September. Despite big progresses made in the past years, the inspection has found various problems, including a large number of small-scale farmers, soil pollution, fake agricultural production materials and overlapping government supervision responsibilities.

Apart from better control of soil pollution, legislators have also called for better awareness on the safety of agricultural products all across the society, drafting and updating safety standards for more agricultural products, the reduce in the use of pesticide, streamlined government supervision, and the establishment of an universal information system that makes agricultural products traceable.