Perhaps, with good reason, it's time to question the contents of your store-bought herbs that flavor your favorite dishes. According to a new study out of the U.K., sage is adulterated 58% of the time.

The new research was conducted by the Institute for Global Food Security (IGFS) at Queen's University Belfast, which tested 19 samples of sage taken from U.K. food suppliers in August and September 2020. While no major supermarkets had tainted batches of sage, online retailers and smaller grocery stores were found to sell contaminated versions of the popular herb. More specifically, these herbs actually featured some sage, but also olive leaves and other tree leaves. (Related: 100 Unhealthiest Foods on the Planet.)

While focused on the U.K., this study raises concerns about potentially having adulterated herbs in our food supply here in the U.S. Sage has not been at the forefront of adulteration domestically, and there are U.S. Food&Drug Administration guidelines for it, but concerns have been raised in the past regarding other herbs, such as turmeric containing lead. And the FDA recently recalled parsley from some grocery store chains due to Salmonella concerns, with High Quality Organics, a U.S. company, as the main culprit.

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