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March 9, 2012

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Lead content in plates way over limit

A type of china tableware produced by a Shanghai-based company was found to contain excessive lead during a routine quality check by authorities in southern China's Guangdong Province.

The plates, produced by the Shanghai Hanshan China Co Ltd, contained a lead concentration of 20 milligrams per liter, about four times the country's standard, said the Guangdong Province Industrial and Commercial Administrative Bureau.

The plates were also found to have a short service lifespan, officials said.

The heavy metal lead can cause harm to people's nervous systems, livers, kidneys and development of blood cells. The excessive lead likely was caused by low-quality dye used on the tableware.

Based in Baoshan District, the company produces tableware that goes all over the Chinese mainland. Its products are mainly sold in supermarkets and hypermarkets. It has plants in nearly 10 provinces and cities. The questioned plates were produced in Guangdong. The inspection tested 180 pieces of tableware, among which near 30 percent failed the check.

Officials also found china tableware produced by a company based in Hebei Province contained lead 11 times higher than the country's standard. And some spoons manufactured by a Guangdong company contained excessive amounts of cadmium, which is also harmful to the human liver and kidney.

Shanghai commercial administrative officials remained silent yesterday.


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