U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson says recent reports of tainted food and products from China have caused fear among American consumers.

Speaking at a conference of U.S.-China trade relations in Washington Tuesday, Paulson urged China to address safety issues that he said are hurting the "Made in China" brand in the United States.

The U.S. government has recalled a number of Chinese products this year for safety concerns, including children's toys products that contain dangerous amounts of lead.

Paulson reiterated the U.S. position that China should allow its currency, the yuan, to appreciate at a quicker pace, and to eventually implement a market-determined currency.

The U.S. contends that China keeps the value of the yuan artificially low, giving an advantage to Chinese exporters.  Paulson said currency reforms will help China balance and sustain its rapidly growing economy.