Authorities have asked Elite Wholesale and Zein Food AS (Kafi AS) to pull the product Yerba Mate Kharta Khadra tea from its shelves after the illegal drug Anthrachinon was found in the tea bags.
“The Food Safety Authority asks consumers who bought the product to throw it or return it to the store where the product was purchased,” says Mattilsynet’s notice.
“Anthrachinone can have a laxative effect and the herbs containing this substance have been used as tea where it has been marketed as slimming.”
According to Mattilsynet, two types of green and white packaging in packs of 250 grams (g) containing 20 tea bags in each have been identified as the product s for consumers to avoid.
The product, originates in Argentina and is packed in Syria, is marked with a best before date of 25/11/2020 for white packages and 25/11/2020 and 20/10/2021 for green packages.
Mattilsynet adds that around 2900 kilograms (kg) have been imported with approximately 11000 packages of 20 tea bags.
The product is sold in a number of chain independent food stores throughout Norway with Elite Wholesale stating that it has now sold out with no new stock expected.
Meanwhile, Zein Food AS Kafi says it currently has around 115kg of the product in stock.
“Products containing herbs with a laxative effect can be unfortunate to use, especially over time,” Mattilsynet adds.
“All foods where illegal ingredients are detected are prohibited by the Norwegian Food Safety Authority.”