(ECNS) -- The use of chemical fertilizers for growing vegetables and fruit trees has exceeded the "safety level" in China, according to vice minster of Agriculture Zhang Taolin.
Zhang made the statement at a press conference organized by China's State Council Information Office in Beijing on Tuesday.
The official said the country has focused on improving the efficiency and accuracy of its use of chemical fertilizers in recent years and made great progress, as demonstrated by the bumper grain harvest.
Efficiency has increased by about 30 percent and has had a significant effect on agricultural production. However, output still remains below that of developed countries, it was added.
Zhang warned that the rapid increase of planting fruit trees and vegetables in recent years had led to the heavy use of fertilizers, to the point of exceeding the "safety level".
China needs to make it a priority to reduce the use of fertilizers in these sectors, he noted.
The agriculture ministry also aims to improve irrigation efficiency this year. Other efforts include upgrading its management of livestock manure, recycling waste materials, as well as the disposal of straw in the most environmentally suitable manner.