"Organic food from China, like tea and frozen broccoli, has increasingly found its way onto American store shelves, typically emblazoned with the green 'U.S.D.A. organic' seal also found on food grown in this country.
The federal certification, the backbone of the organics industry, is aimed at assuring consumers that farmers and food manufacturers have passed tough, independent inspections - even half a world away.
Now serious questions about certification in China have been raised by the United States Agriculture Department. The agency, which uses private groups to conduct most organic inspections worldwide, has banned a leading American inspector from operating in China because of a conflict of interest that strikes at the heart of the organics' guarantee. The federal agency also plans to send an audit team to China this year to broadly review the certification process..."