This has been an issue for years. The US government seems unable to effectively stop the flow of contaminated teas.
A perfect case and point is the Teavana issue. You have to look at the data from independent lab testing contracted by Glaucus! It is mindblowing. Keep in mind that Glaucus has something to gain in the short position, so the text could be interpreted as biased.
Teavana claims that all batches of tea are tested for pesticides and do not exceed US nor EU standards ..........
But after viewing the data, I think my words were MUCH stronger than theirs, likely because I am a tea drinker, I am already PO'ed at Teavana for their shady practices and baseless superlatively described claims/marketing hype towards a oft unsuspecting customer base, and the data thoroughly disgusts me.http://seekingalpha.com/article/1019431-independent-lab-tests-indicate-teavana-deceiving-consumers-about-pesticides-in-tea
This is a drama unfolding before our very eyes, and if true ... how could Starbucks even consider sealing the deal ... and how could not some reform begin due to the relatively large scope of the contamination in Westerners' eyes. Could the huge house of cards constructed by Teavana come tumbling down? I think it is quite possible.
You truly must read this report and focus on the data and relative comparisons. Not sure which is worse, the levels of contamination or the large number of banned pesticides showing up in the tests. I would expect follow up testing to confirm those results. And if confirmed, the s**t will surely hit the fan.
Of course hearing what the store employees say when asked if their teas have any pesticides is interesting as well. However it is a bit hard to draw a conclusion on that since you could perhaps call any larger tea company and Joe Employee would possibly say the same thing. Or were they trained to respond this way ...
... and what will Starbucks say in response? Their Tazo brand fared very well in the comparative testing! I found that interesting!