GAC|Cancel Label Filing for Imported Pre-packaged Food by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

On April 22, 2019, General Administration of Customs (GAC) issued an announcement on the Management of Supervision on Labelling of imported and Exported Pre-packaged foods, declaring that the requirement of label filing for first imported pre-packaged food is cancelled from October 1, 2019.

The announcement is as follows:

1. Cancelling the requirement of label filing for pre-packaged food that is imported into China for the first time, the act comes into force on October 1, 2019. As one of the compulsory inspection items, the label of imported pre-packaged food is inspected by the customs, in accordance with the laws and regulations on food safety and inspection of import & export commodities.

2. import agency shall take the responsibility of reviewing the compliance of the Chinese label of imported pre-packaged food. The label which is not comply with the relevant laws, regulations and national food safety standards in China may not be imported to China.

3. If the imported pre-packaged food is sampled for inspection on site or in laboratory, the import agency shall submit the qualified certification, the original and translated labels of the imported pre-packaged food, the Chinese label sample and other supporting dossiers to the customs.

4. If the customs receives notifications from other administrative departments or/and complaints from consumers about the non-compliant label of pre-packaged imported food, the customs shall verify the situation, once ////confirm/i/i/i/ied, shall impose punishment according to laws.

5. imported pre-packaged food for display, samples, tax-free goods (except for tax exemption from island), self-use by the embassy and consulate, pre-packaged food through passenger carrying, post parcel, express package or cross-border e-commerce should comply with other relevant regulations.

6. Manufacturers who export pre-packaged food should guarantee the label comply with the standards or contractual requirements of the importing country (or region).

7. The following announcements shall be abolished from October 1, 2019: a) announcement No. 44 in 2006 by former AQSIQ, b) announcement No. 59 in 2011 by former AQSIQ, c) announcement No. 27 in 2012 by former AQSIQ. The label information of imported pre-packaged food that has been filed shall become invalid from October 1, 2019.

Can the Wine Bought Back Abroad be Sold to the Market? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Can you sale wine brought back abroad directly to the market without the Chinese label? China's "Food Safety Law" clearly stipulates that pre-packaged foods may not be imported if they do not have Chinese labels, Chinese instructions or labels, and the instructions do not comply with the provisions of this article. Recently, Wenchang Hengxing Trading Co., Ltd. Hengxing Commercial City was fined 5,100 yuan for imported wines whose business labels did not meet food safety standards.

According to reports, on the morning of March 7, Hainan Provincial Market Supervision Administration Inspection Team and Wenchang City Food and Drug Administration law enforcement personnel inspected the liquors operated by Hengxing Commercial City Supermarket. Law enforcement officers found that two bottles of “Hennessy V·S·O·P” and “Hennessy X·O” were placed on the shelves of the “Famous Wine Customer Service Center”. The labels on the bottles were only marked in English, and there was no Simplified Chinese and domestic agents. Business information.

According to the relevant parties' confession, the above two bottles of wine were purchased by the store owner when they visited Australia last year. They were unable to provide the purchase of two bottles of wine, the supplier's relevant qualification certificate and the product quality inspection report.

Due to the business label that does not meet the food safety standards, the Wenchang Food and Drug Administration recently imposed an administrative penalty on Wenchang Hengxing Trading Co., Ltd. Hengxing Commercial City, a fine of 5,100 yuan, and confiscated two bottles of illegally marketed wine.

Food Sampling Analysis in the First Quarter of 2019 by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Global Foodmate summarized the information on the sampling inspection of food and food-related products issued by the State Administration of Markets Regulations and the local (provincial, autonomous region, municipality) market supervision departments from January to March 2019. Through summary analysis, the following conclusions were drawn.

1. The overall situation

In the first quarter of 2019, the national and local (provincial, autonomous region, municipality directly under the central government) market supervision and management departments inspected 124,294 batches of food and food-related products nationwide, including 121,742 batches of qualified samples and 2,552 batches of unqualified samples. The rate was 97.9%, which was the same as the same period in 2018.

2. Analysis of various types of food sampling

The product types with large sampling volume are meat and meat products, vegetables and their products, aquatic products and their products, and the sampling amount is more than 10,000 batches. From the results of the sampling test:

a. Unqualified samples were not detected: milk and dairy products, cocoa and roasted coffee products.

b. The pass rate of sampling is higher, above 99%:frozen food, canned food, beans and soy products, grain and its products, tea and related products, health food, candy and chocolate products, food additives, special dietary food, edible oil And its products, fruits and their products, sugar.

c. The failure rate is low, less than 97%: vegetables and their products, convenience foods, food and beverage products, food-related products.

3. Analysis of the reasons for unqualification

The main problems found in the first quarter of the unqualified products were microbial exceeding the standard, over-range use of food additives, residues of agricultural and veterinary drugs, and quality indicators did not meet the standards.

a. The microbial exceeding the standard accounted for 22.1% of the total unqualified items. The outstanding problem items are coliform bacteria, total number of colonies, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and mold. Foods with excessive microbial counts mainly involved food and beverage products, beverages, meat products, convenient food, etc.

b. Over-range and over use of food additives accounted for 21.5% of the total unqualified, mainly for the illegal use of raising agents, bleaching agents, preservatives, sweeteners, involving food and beverage products, vegetable products, convenience foods and other categories.

c. Pesticide residues exceeded 16.2% of the total unqualified, and the food categories involved were mainly vegetables and fruits.

d. The veterinary drug residue exceeded 15.0% of the total unqualified, and the unqualified food categories mainly included aquatic products, livestock and poultry meat, and fresh eggs.

e. The quality index does not meet the standard account for 13.3% of the total unqualified, mainly related to indicators such as peroxide value, alcohol content and acid price.

What are the Special Regulations for the Label of Infant Formula in China? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

1. If there is an animal source in the product name, the animal source of raw materials such as raw milk, milk powder, whey (protein) powder, etc. used in the ingredient list should be clearly indicated according to the product formula. When there are more than two animal sources of dairy raw materials used, the proportion of raw materials of various animal origins should be indicated.

2. The ingredient list shall be marked with the specific variety name of the edible vegetable oil in descending order of the added amount.

3. The nutrient fact table should be listed in the order of nutrients specified in the National Standard for Food Safety of Infant Formula Milk Powder, and classified according to categories such as energy, protein, fat, carbohydrate, vitamins, minerals, and selectable ingredients.

4. If the origin of raw materials such as raw milk and raw milk powder is claimed, the specific origin or origin country shall be clearly marked, and the vague information such as “imported milk source”, “from foreign pasture”, “ecological ranch” and “imported raw materials” shall not be used.

5. It is stated that it should be indicated that infant formula milk powder is applicable to the age of the month and can be marked with “Stage 1, 2, and 3” at the same time.

6. Labels and instructions must not contain the following contents: related to disease prevention and treatment functions; expressive or suggestive of health effects; expressive or suggestive of functional expressions such as puzzles, increased resistance or immunity, protection of the intestines; Standards should not contain or use substances in the product formula, with the words "not added", "not included" and "zero added" to emphasize not use or not include certian substances; false, exaggerated, scientific or absolute content; The claim of the recipe registration is inconsistent with the products. 

GLOBAL REGULATIONS ON TRANS FATS by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Provisions for the Content Claim of Trans Fatty Acids (By Country/Region)
Trans fatty acids are unsaturated fatty acids that have negative effects on human health. Some countries or regions have listed trans fatty acids as core nutrients and requested mandatory labelling. Food companies often indicate there is no trans fatty acids in their products as a selling point.

Therefore, Global Foodmate summarised the provisions for the content claim of trans fatty acids in Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR, Taiwan, USA and Australia/New Zealand for your reference

Press release: link

What Are the Principles for Implementation of Food Additive Product Standards in China? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Definition of food additives in China: Synthetic or natural substances added to foods to improve food quality and color, aroma, taste, and preservation and processing needs.

In addition to the National Food Safety Standard - Standards for Uses of Food Additives (GB2760), China's food additive standard system also includes food additive product standards, labeling standards and production specifications. The Global Foodmate has outlined the implementation principles for food additive product standards and provides a brief introduction.

1. Single variety food additive

For a single variety of food additive, products should comply with the corresponding quality standards, including national standards, industry standards. In the case of food additives without national standards or industry standards, additives manufacturers shall refer to the food additive quality specifications in the National HealthCommission announcement in the production.

2. Compound food additive

National Food Safety Standards for Food Additives-Compound Food Additives (GB 26687-2011) applies to compound food additives other than food flavors and gum base additives. It mainly defines the definition, naming principles, labeling requirement and other content.

However, the food additive compound raising agent should meet the requirements of GB 1886.245-2016 National Food Safety Standard Food Additive Compound Raising Agent.

3. Food spice and food flavors

GB 29938-2013 National Food Safety Standards General Rules for Food Spice is a general standard for product quality specifications for food spice permitted in GB 2760. It mainly stipulate the definition and requirements of food spice. For food spice that do not yet have national food safety standards or related standards, GB 29938 is implemented and food spice shall produce according to its requirements.

GB 30616-2014 National Food Safety Standards Food Flavors are product quality standards for food flavors. The standard stipulates the definitions, technical requirements, labels, etc. of food flavors and food flavors ingredients.

4. Processing aids for the food industry (food industry enzyme, food industry processing aids)

GB 1886.174-2016 National Food Safety Standard Food Additives for Food Industry Enzyme is a general standard for product quality specifications for food industry enzyme permitted in GB 2760. It mainly stipulates the definition and technical requirements of enzyme for food industry.

 

The Reply of the General Office of the Ministry of Health on the Applicable Standards for Enzyme for the Food Industry stipulates that the production and operation of the enzyme for food industry that have been listed in GB2760 and announced by the Ministry shall be carried out in accordance with the quality requirements and inspection methods stipulated in GB 25594. If the quality requirements for food enzyme previously published are inconsistent with GB 25594, they shall be implemented in accordance with GB 25594 (already replaced by GB 1886.174-2016 National Food Safety Standard Food Additives for Food Industry Enzyme).

There are no general product quality specifications for processing aids for the food industry, and each species implements corresponding national standards or related standards.

5. Nutritional forification substances

For the product quality specifications of nutritional fortification substances, if there are national standards or related standards, the corresponding standards shall be implemented.

In addition, food additives, including nutritional forification substances, are specified in the Tenth Chapter of the Food Safety Law.

The Global Foodmate reminds all food additive manufacturers to implement the correct food additive product standards and produce according to the corresponding standards to ensure the safety of the food additives themselves, thereby reducing the risks in the food production process. At the same time, food manufacturers are reminded to aquire inspection reports in accordance with the correct food additive product standards when purchasing food additives to ensure that the food additives used are safe and compliant.

Please note: Original article of Global Foodmate of Information Service and Business Department, please indicate the source from the Global Foodmate if reprint.

Press release: link

Summary of Infant Formula Products Changes by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

According to the change information of infant formula products issued by the National Medical Products Administration, as of March 20, 2019, Global Foodmate summarised, a total of 55 factories and 330 formulas approved for change. Among them, there are 47 domestic factories with 300 formulas; 8 overseas factories with 30 formulas; 56 formulas for goat milk powder and 274 formulas for milk powder.

According to the statistics of the changes that have been released, the changes in infant formula products mainly include changes in labels, shareholders, and product names. 114 recipes involve corporate change, 100 recipes involve label changes, 45 recipes involve company name changes, 20 recipes involve changes in production addresses, 7 recipes involve product name changes, and 6 involve production process changes.

Among the label changes, 14 recipes involved changes in content claims, 7 recipes related to functional claim changes, 33 trademark changes, 41 graphic changes, and 20 recipes for other changes (certification project changes, product description changes, etc.).

Analysis of the change found that the infant formula product changes are mainly label changes and corporate changes. The label changes mainly involve graphic changes and trademark changes in the main display layout and non-main display layout. The nutrition claims are changed less, accounting for about 17% of the label changes.

Press release: link

Statistical Analysis of Unqualified Wines Entering China in 2018 by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

According to the information on unqualified foods that were not allowed to enter China from January to December 2018 issued by the General Administration of Customs, Global Foodmate found that 36 batches of unqualified imported wines were not allowed to enter in 2018, with a gross weight of 63,802 kg.

Unqualified wines that were not allowed to enter the country were from 8 countries or regions, including France, Italy, Chile, Australia, Spain, Germany, the United States, and Moldova. Among them, the most unqualified wines from Moldova (12 batches), followed by 7 batches from France and 5 batches from Spain.

Unqualified reasons mainly were over-scope use of food additives, inconsistent goods, unqualified labels, unqualified packaging, sorbic acid and its salts do not meet the requirements of national standards, ochratoxin A exceeds the standard, and the quality is unqualified. Among them, half of the total unqualified wines (18 batches) were due to the unqualified packages.

These unqualified wines were mainly refused for entry at Jiangsu Port, Shanghai Port, Guangxi Port, Shenzhen Port, Tianjin Port, Zhejiang Port and Zhuhai Port. Among them, Jiangsu Port detected the most unqualified wines, with 16 batches.


The General Administration of Customs stated that the wines were not allowed to enter the country have been returned or destroyed at the port.

Please note: Original article of Global Foodmate of Information Service and Business Department, please indicate the source from the Global Foodmate if reprint.

Press release: link

Summary | FSMP Approval List in China (February, 2019) by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Last week, the state issued two batches of FSMP registrations to be claimed information on the 13th and 14th of February. So, what is the relationship between the two batches of “to be claimed” information and the registered FSMP products? How many approved products are there now?

After a batch of FSMP registrations published on October 8, 2018, the SAMR did not publish any registration catalogue in the following six months. It is reported that the products currently registered are no longer published in the form of “registration catalogue”, but are published in the form of “to be claimed”, and “not approved” is also released under the information of “to be claimed”.

At present, although the registration list is not issued, the former Food and Drug Administration is still continuously updating the information on the registered FSMP products. Up to now, the number of FSMP registered under the “Enterprise Enquiry” column of the Food and Drug Administration has been 24. In addition to the 18 FSMP products issued by the SAMR in the form of “registration catalogue”, 2 batches of FSMP were announced in the form of “to be claimed” with certificates issued on December 27, 2018 and February 13, 2019.

Press release: link

Top 10 Regulatory Highlights in China Food Industry of 2018 by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

In 2018, China's food industry has undergone dramatic changes, from institutional reforms to cross-border e-commerce to changes in many important policies and regulations. To recap some of our top headlines, Global Foodmate put together a list of the top 10 regulatory highlights (chronologically) in China food industry from the past year:

1. China 4 Dairy National Standards (Draft) Are Revising

Feb 20, 2018, China issued four new national standard drafts about raw milk, pasteurized milk, sterilized milk and method for examination of reconstituted milk. The drafts have been greatly improved in the three key aspects including raw milk grading, processing technology specification and packaging identification of milk product.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5750.html

2. China's Food Regulation Structure Reform

On March 13, 2018, the 1st session of the 13th NPC China held its 4th plenary session, the State Council institutional reform scheme was explained during the meeting.

What changes have taken place in this reform regarding food industry?

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5753.html

3. Announcement of Registration Extension for Overseas Producers

On March 13th, China Certification and Accreditation Commission (CNCA) issued an announcement about the registration extension for overseas infant formula manufacture, which is estimated to create lots of challenges for oversea infant formula manufacturers.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5754.html

4. China Food Regulation Structure- “Three Decide” the Stipulation

“Three Decide” was stipulated by SAMR. The detailed responsibilities and internal institutions and leading members were determined. What changes have taken place in this reform regarding food industry? After the “three decide” the stipulation released officially, Global Foodmate summarized the changes in order to support oversea companies to understand directly and clearly.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5874.html

5. What Changes Will Happen on The New Standards of Formula Food for Infant and Children in China?

On September 7, 2018, the National Health Commission issued the "GB 10767-201X Food Safety National Standards for Children's Formula Foods (Draft for Comment)", and publicly solicited opinions from the whole society.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5893.html

6. From Oct 1, 2018, "QS" Logo may not be used in Food Production

In order to guide local food and drug supervision and administration departments to conscientiously implement the production license system for food (including food additives, the same below), the State Food and Drug Administration issued a notice on the relevant matters implemented by the Measures. The notice clarifies that from October 1, 2018, food produced by food producers may no longer use the original packaging, labels and "QS" mark.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5910.html

7. Notice on Drafting Technical Guidelines of FSMP Clinical Trials

In order to improve FSMP registration management, guide the clinical trials research and standardize the clinical trials process of specific full nutrition FSMP, ensure the scientificity and reliability of clinical trials results, protect the safe rights of consumers, the SAMR plans to public solicitate the research units on the technical guidelines for clinical trials of specific full nutrition FSMP.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5939.html

8. From 2019, Both China and Australia Will Exempt Most of Customs Duties

On November 8th, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi held the fifth round of China-Australia diplomatic and strategic dialogue with Australian Foreign Minister Payne in Beijing. China and Australia will carry out the fifth round of tariff concessions on New Year's Day in 2019. By then, almost all goods in bilateral trade will enjoy zero tariffs.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5950.html

9. The changes of Cross-Border E-Commerce import Retail Policy

On the 21st of November, Premier Li Keqiang chaired the State Council executive meeting and decided to continue and improve the cross-border e-commerce retail import policy and expand the scope of application, and expand the opening to stimulate the consumption potential. Global Foodmate has reviewed the changes in cross-border e-commerce retail import policies and the latest policy contents in recent years in the form of long picture.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5951.html

10. GB7718 "Prepackaged Food Labeling Standards"Draft

On November 26th, 2018, the National Food Safety Standards Review Committee issued the GB7718-201X "General Rules for the Labelling of Prepackaged Foods" drafting for comments. Global Foodmate compiled the important changes and main modifications.

http://info.foodmate.com/news/show-5954.html

Please note: Original article of Global Foodmate of Information Service and Business Department, please indicate the source from the Global Foodmate if reprint.

Press release: link

 

Source: Global Foodmate

How to Use, Label and Register Substances Belong to Food Fortifiers & Novel Food Ingredients? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Many substances can be used as food fortifiers also novel food ingredients, sometimes, food enterprises might be confused about it during food production. In fact, the quality specifications and usage requirements of using as food fortifiers and food ingredients are quite different. Therefore, Global Foodmate summarized the substances belong to food fortifiers and novel food ingredients, and their usage and labelling requirements in foods. Global Foodmate also discussed how to apply for approval of a newly occurred substance that meets the abovementioned criteria in China.

1. Substances belong to food fortifiers and novel food ingredients
(1) Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA)

(2) Arachidonic acid (AA or ARA)

(3) Galacto-Oligosaccharides (GOS)

(4) Polyfructose

(5) Yeast β-glucan

2. How to use and label?

For substances that belong to both food fortifiers and novel food ingredients, they should be used and labelled according to the actual function in the finished product.

Quoted from the Q&As concerning the Standard for the usage of Food Fortifiers GB 14880-2012, “For some substances that belong to both food fortifiers and novel food ingredients, such as DHA, AA, GOS and polyfructose, if the purpose of adding is nutrition fortification, usage of the substance shall comply with this standard. If the substance is used as a food ingredient, it shall meet the requirements of relevant notices of novel food ingredients.”

When the substance is used as food fortifiers, the content and NRV% (NRV% is optionally labelled in Foods for Special Uses) of the fortified nutrients shall be labelled in the nutrition facts. The labelling, including name, order, expression unit, rounding level, etc., shall comply with Table 1 of GB28050-2011 General Standard for Nutritional Labelling of Prepackaged Foods. For nutrients that are not listed in Table 1 but are allowed by GB 14880, the labeling order shall be located after the nutrients listed in Table 1.

When the substance is used as food ingredients, the daily consumption and application range of it shall be labelled.
3. How to register a novel food ingredient that can be used as both food fortifier and food ingredient in China:

When registering a substance that belongs to both food fortifier and food ingredient, the purpose of adding, applicable population, application range and daily consumption shall be taken into consideration.

‘Food Fortifier’ is defined by GB 14880 as a natural or synthetic nutrient that is added into food in order to increase the nutritional value of the food. In China, food fortifiers belong to food additives, therefore, they shall be applied for approval as novel food additives.

Administrative Measures for the Safety Review of Novel Food Ingredients (2013) and Regulation of Declaration and Acceptance Requirements for Novel Food Ingredients defined the ‘Novel Food Ingredients’ as the following items that are not been traditionally eaten in China: Animals, plants and microorganisms; Components separated from animals, plants and microorganisms; Components with altered original structures; Other newly developed food ingredients. Substances meet the abovementioned requirements shall be applied for registration if the substances are intended to be used in food production.

If a substance is intended to be used in general foods, with varied applicable population (e.g., only excluding infants, pregnant and lactating women or without limitation), with a wide range of application (suitable for multiple types of foods) and the daily consumption is not low, it is generally to be registered as novel food ingredient. While, the allowed dosage of food fortifiers is generally small and the application range is relatively narrow. Also, the approval requires the demonstration of the necessities, effects and others of using certain food fortifier.

Additionally, if a substance has been registered as food fortifier, it cannot be approved as novel food ingredient according to the Regulation of Declaration and Acceptance Requirements for Novel Food Ingredients issued in 2013. On the contrary, if a substance is firstly registered as novel food ingredient to be used in general foods, it is also possible to be approved as food fortifier afterwards, taking Yeast β-glucan as an example.

Enterprises shall choose to declare, according to their own needs. Global Foodmate provide registration services of novel food ingredients and novel food additives for domestic and overseas enterprises, please feel free to contact Global Foodmate. 

Please note: The original article of Global Foodmate Information Service and Business Department, please indicate the source from the Global Foodmate if reprint.

Press release: link

Review of the First Year of Infant Formula New Policy by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

Review of the First Year of Infant Formula New Policy

2018 was the first year that the infant formula registration system was established. With the rise of industry barrier in 2018, the companies that had gained formulation registration approval take their advantages to rush into the infant formula market and the competition intensified. Meanwhile, the slowing registration approval process in 2018 also made many companies that are still in the waiting list suffer.

1. Registration approval process slowed down

At the end of 2017, a total of 940 formulations of infant formula from 128 manufacturers had been approved, of which 93 were domestic manufacturers and 35 were overseas manufacturers. However, by the end of 2018, only 255 formulations received approval. It is estimated that more than 500 formulations are still waiting to be approved.

Generally speaking, the approval process was more stringent in 2018 than in 2017. The General Administration of Market Regulation has placed more emphasis on food safety. It was required to conduct on-site inspections of overseas manufacturers. The expert panel had already reviewed certain countries, but Australian and New Zealand have not yet been scheduled, thus an extending of the approval time was expected.

2. Infant formula market became more concentrated

Since the implementation of the infant formula registration system, more than 70% of the small and medium scale brands have been eliminated. Branded enterprises that have gained registration approval strengthened their competitiveness, thus the infant formula market became more concentrated.

According to an independent dairy analyst, during this market integration, domestic manufacturers seized more opportunities by adjusting their channel policies, compared with foreign manufacturers. The active channel policy is competing for the market share in small and medium scale cities (estimated market size of 10-15 billion RMB). Therefore, the performance and market share of domestic brands increased significantly.

Compared with the rapid growth of large-scale enterprises, however, some small business lost their competitiveness in the market. The number of infant formula brands in the market has already decreased due to the new policy, but the problem of oversupply and product homogeneity still exists. Next, the market might enter into the strangling stage of ‘Law of Jungle’.

Please note: Original article of Global Foodmate of Information Service and Business Department, please indicate the source from the Global Foodmate if reprint.

Press release: link

Comparison of Food Safety Supervision & Sampling Plan-- 2019 vs 2018 by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

On 25 December, 2018, State Administration for Marketing Regulation (SAMR) solicited public opinions on 2019 Food Safety Supervision &Sampling Plan.

Global Foodmate recently compared 2019 Food Safety Supervision & Sampling Plan (hereafter referred to as ‘2019 VERSION’) with 2018 Food Safety Supervision & Sampling Plan (hereafter referred to as ‘2018 VERSION’), and now briefly introduces the changes in food categories and sampling items.

Revision of food categories:

2019 VERSION shows a more detailed classification of food categories, which includes 181 food categories and 14 more than that in 2018 VERSION (167 food categories).

Changes of food categories are as follows:

a. Revising names of 2 food categories:

‘Deeply processed aquatic products’ is revised as ‘Other aquatic products’, ‘Bottled (barreled) of drinking water’ is revised as ‘Packaged drinking water’.

b. Adding 2 food categories:

‘Food supplements for pregnant and lactating women’ and ‘Salt’.

c. Elaborating 2 food categories:

‘Other edible oils (semi-refined, fully refined)’ is classified into ‘Rapeseed oil’, ‘Soybean oil’, ‘Edible plant blending oil’ and ‘Other edible oils (semi-refined, fully refined)’.

‘Sugar (white granulated sugar, white soft sugar, brown granulated sugar, rock sugar, cube sugar, golden slab sugar, etc.)’ is classified into ‘White granulated sugar’, ‘White soft sugar, ‘Brown granulated sugar’, ‘Brown sugar’, ‘Rock sugar’, ‘Cube sugar’, ‘Golden slab sugar’ and ‘Other sugars’.

The sampling items of the elaborated food categories are also clearly specified.

Revision of sampling items:

a. Increasing sampling items of 51 food categories

b. Decreasing sampling items of 99 food categories

c. Revising sampling items of 13 food categories

Press release: link

Analysis - Fraud and False Propaganda of Food and Health Food by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

In July, 2017, 9 Chinese authorities including the Food Safety Office of the State Council jointly issued the Notice of Rectification Work on Fraud and False Propaganda of Food and Health Food.Since the rectification work was carried out, local food regulatory authorities have collected many illegal evidences by conducting thorough investigations and random inspections, receiving complaints and reports from the public.

On 29 June, 2018, in order to further strengthen the supervision of food and health and to provide a friendlier environment for consumers, the rectification work was extended to the end of 2018.

Till the end of October, 2018, food regulatory authorities at all levels investigated and punished 49,000 cases of violations with goods worth 1.71 billion RMB and the police arrested 8,900 criminals. In addition, SAMR announced 10 cases of food fraud and false propaganda recently in December, 2018.

Global Foodmate analysed the published cases and found out the main methods for fraud and false propaganda of food and health food are as follows: 

1. Conducting food production and operation activities without permission

2. Selling imported prepackaged food without Chinese label

3. Producing foods that are not within the approved contents

4. Unauthorised changes of production processes

5. Illegal addition of non-edible substances such as drugs

6. Illegal promotion via such as conference, health lectures, expert hotline, internet, TV, radio, etc.

7. Claims of disease prevention or treatment

8. Labeling with false or illegal advertisement

9. Bogus products

10. Other violations

SAMR always be very stringent about the fraud and false propaganda of food and health food and will severely punish the violation activities. Meanwhile, authorities will promptly take control measures of the involved food and identify the source of the food. Authorities also supervise involved enterprises in order to promptly recall, suspend selling, destroy or conduct other measures to prevent the involved food re-entering into the market.

A recent case:

Illegal conference of promotion food held by Hongrui Lebang Company (hereafter referred to as ‘COMPANY’). In August, 2018, the COMPANY misled elderly people by ‘brain-wash’ promotion to believe that the collagen peptide solid drinks sold by COMPANY have the disease treatment function.

Illegal fact:

The activity violated Paragraph 1 of Article 8 of Anti-Unfair Competition Law of the People's Republic of China, which was deemed as false propaganda. 

Penalty result:

A penalty of 1 million RMB was imposed to COMPANY. Given the fact that COMPANY did not cooperate with the investigation and deliberately concealed the illegal facts. Furthermore, the amount of money involved was huge and the social influence was bad. COMPANY was suspected of committing crimes and was transferred to the police department.

Press release: link

Market and Regulation Review of Sports Nutrition Food in China by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

1. What is sports nutrition food in China?

(1) According to GB 24154-2015 National Food Safety Standard General Standard for Sports Nutrition Food, the definition of sports nutrition food in China is:

Food specially processed to meet the physiological metabolic state, athletic ability and special requirements for certain nutrients of sports population (refers to people who participate in physical exercise 3 times or more per week, each time lasts for 30 min or more, and each time exercise intensity reaches medium or above)

(2) Sports nutrition food belongs to the FSDU (Food for Special Dietary Uses)

The FSDU is divided into the following 4 categories:

       a. Infant formula food

       b. Infant auxiliary food

       c. Food for special medical purpose (FSMP)

       d. Others (Including auxiliary food supplements, sports nutrition food and other special dietary foods with corresponding national standards)

2. Market development trend of sports nutrition industry in China

(1) Fast growth of the sports nutrition food market in China with promising future

Since 2015, the sports nutrition food market in China has been rapidly growing with a market size of $ 206.1 million in 2017. The market size of sports nutrition food in China experienced a CAGR of 37.3% between 2013-2017. The year on year growth in 2017 reached 47% and is far higher than that in global and American markets. The market of sports nutrition food in China is still in an early development stage and a large potential awaits to be fulfilled.

(2) China issued a series of favorable policies to support the sports nutrition industry which brought great opportunities for development:

      a. Several Opinions on Accelerating Development of the Sports Industry to Promote Sports Consumption (No.46)

      b. The ‘13th Five-Year Plan’ for Sports Development 

      c. National Fitness Program (2016-2022)

      d. Health China 2030

      e. Ice and Snow Sports Development Plan (2016-2025)

      f. National Nutrition Program (2017-2030)

(3) The growing enthusiasm for national fitness is booming the development of sports nutrition industry. The proportion of the sports population in China is not high but there is an obvious sign of rise and giant development space compared with the developed countries, which indicates huge consumption potential. Meanwhile, with the increases of GDP per capita, the pursuit by the public of food nutrition and health shows great-leap-forward development. More and more attention has been paid to all kinds of sports food under segmented scenes, and the consumers yearn for the safe, nutritious, healthy and qualified foods and are more likely to choose the brand enterprises.

3. Regulations and standards review and production permission of sports nutrition food in China

(1) During 2004-2015, Chinese government promoted the establishment of regulations and standards of sports nutrition food, which granted sports nutrition food the legal position in Chinese market.

2004—Proposed to establish Chinese General Standard for Sports Nutrition Food

2006—Promulgated and implemented 5 Sports Nutrition Food Industry Standards

2009—Promulgated and implemented National Standard for Sports Nutrition Food

2015—Promulgated National Food Safety Standard General Standard for Sports Nutrition Food

(2) According to the product property and sports characteristics, sports nutrition food is divided into 6 categories:

       a. Protein supplement

       b. Speed powder class

       c. Endurance class

       d. Energy control class

       e. Energy supplementary class

        f. Post-exercise recovery class

 

(3) SC (production license) of sports nutrition food in China

For now, only 3 provinces/ municipalities, namely Beijing (12 July, 2017), Guangdong (19 June, 2018), Heilongjiang (29 September, 2018) in China have issued the Sports Nutrition Food Review Program (Trial) where enterprises could be granted SC for sports nutrition food.

(4) Labeling regulations for sports nutrition food

GB 7718-2011 National Food Safety Standard General Principles for Labels of Prepackaged Food stipulates the basic labeling requirements for labels of prepackaged food (including FSDU). GB 13432-2013 National Food Safety Standard Label of Prepackaged FSDU) stipulates the special labeling requirements of FSDU. The labels of FSDU shall be in accordance with GB7718 and GB13432. For prepackaged FSDU that meets the content claim requirements of GB13432, if functional claims are made on energy and/or nutrition ingredients, the terms of functional claims shall be the standard terms of functional claims specified in GB 28050-2011 National Food Safety Standard General Principles for Nutrition Labels of Prepackaged Food.

Press release: link

Can Imported Infant Formula Catch the Express Train of Cross-border E-commerce (CBEC) under the New Policy in China? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

The imported infant formula has been very popular in the cross-border e-commerce field, the purchasing volume has been growing over the years. Recently, 3 notices about cross-border e-commerce retail were published by Chinese authorities, which will all come into force on 1 January, 2019.

Namely,

(1) Notice of 6 Ministries including Ministry of Commerce about ‘Strengthening the Supervision of Cross-border E-commerce Retail’ (hereafter referred to as ‘NOTICE’) (published on 28 Nov., 2018).

(2) Notice of 3 Ministries including Ministry of Finance about ‘Improving the import Tax Policy of Cross-border E-commerce Retail’ (published on 29 Nov., 2018).

(3) Notice of 13 Ministries including Ministry of Finance about ‘Adjusting the List of Cross-border E-commerce Retail import Products’ (hereafter referred to as ‘LIST’) (published on 20 Nov., 2018).

According to the NOTICE, products (ONLY for self-use, reselling prohibited) imported via cross-border e-commerce channel will no longer be required for the first-time import license, registration or filing since 1 January, 2019, which will be considered as personal use and will be applicable to the following 37 pilot cities:

Beijing, Tianjin, Shanghai, Tangshan, Hohhot, Shenyang, Dalian, Changchun, Harbin, Nanjing, Suzhou, Wuxi, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Yiwu, Hefei, Fuzhou, Xiamen, Nanchang, Qingdao, Weihai, Zhengzhou, Wuhan, Changsha, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Dongguan, Nanning, Haikou, Chongqing, Chengdu, Guiyang, Kunming, Xi'an, Lanzhou, Pingtan.

Products with tariff number of 19011010 ‘Formulated milk powder’ are found in the LIST and infant formula belongs to this category. Meanwhile, the remark of ‘excluding the infant formula that is required for registration by Food Safety Law’ for ‘Formulated milk powder’ that occurred in the previous version of list in 2016 is also deleted.

In conclusion, importing infant formula via cross-border e-commerce does not require to obtain the formulation registration approval in those 37 pilot cities. However, infant formula that is imported in non-pilot cities still is subject to market supervision through general trade and needs to register its formulation according to relevant laws and regulations.

The new import policy of cross-border e-commerce retail brings great benefit to some overseas enterprises that have not obtained the approval of formulation registration in China. Global Foodmate believes that the implementation of the new import policy will also further expand the import scale of mainstream products such as milk powder via cross-border e-commerce channel.

Press release: link

GB7718 Interpretation "Pre-packaged Food Labeling Standards" Opinion Draft by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

On November 26th, 2018, the National Food Safety Standards Review Committee issued the GB7718-201X "General Rules for the Labelling of Prepackaged Foods" drafting for comments. Global Foodmate compiled the important changes and main modifications in the following contents:

 (1) Terms and definitions

1. Increase the attribute name definition. “Special characteristics of one or more foods such as ingredient characteristics, process characteristics, food category”.

2. Modify the date of manufacture: "The date the food becomes the final product."

 (2) Basic requirements

1. Adjusted the requirement to use foreign or traditional characters at the same time. It may include the following two conditions:

1) pre-packaged food produced domestically but exported to other countries or regions;

2) imported pre-packaged food.

2. When the maximum surface area of the package or packaging container of the prepackaged food is more than 40 square centimeter, the height of the text, symbol and number of the mandatory labeling content shall not be less than 2.0 mm.

(3) Label Content

1. Added provisions for the labeling requirement of imported prepackaged foods.

2. Revised the regulations on food names.

3. Revised a number of provisions in the ingredient list.

(1) The basis for determining the order of declining ingredients is “calculated by quality”.

(2) Marking of compounded ingredients composition: When all or part of the original ingredients in the compound ingredients are the same as the other ingredients in the food, the relevant ingredients may also be combined and calculated according to the decreasing order of the total amount in the final product.

(3) Food additive labeling rules: It is required to use the food additive INS number instead of the specific name of the food additive when the label area is less than 40 square centimeter.

4. Revised part of the quantitative labeling of ingredients content.

(1) Emphasis on the addition of a certain ingredient: Emphasize the need to indicate the content when adding or containing ingredients, and explain the specific way of quantitative labeling.

(2) Reference to a certain ingredient or ingredient in the name of the food: the amount of the ingredient or ingredient added or the amount in the finished product should be indicated.

(3) Emphasize that there is no or no added ingredient: the standard revision adds provisions for the words “none” and “excluding”. When these words are required, the corresponding ingredients or ingredients should be “0”. .

5. Adjusted the relevant description of net content and specifications.

The manner in which the various casings of animal or plant origin are marked is clearly indicated by the length "meter".

6. Increased the requirements for the origin of imported prepackaged food.

7. Adjusted the relevant requirements for date marking.

8. Clearly import foods do not need to be marked with a production license number.

9. Adjusted the requirements for sensitizing substance labeling:

(1) Mandatory labeling: Direct use of sensitizing substance ingredients in production and processing. However, if non-protein parts are used, they are exempt from labeling.

(2) suggestive labeling: sensitizing substances may be introduced during production and processing

10. Add requirements for special approved foods.

11. Added provisions on the labeling of food groups:

a) foods requiring special approval;

b) foods for specific food groups have been specified in national standards, industry standards and local standards;

c) Foods that have been sufficiently scientifically proven to meet the special nutritional needs of different populations.

12. Exemption from the relevant labeling content.

A pre-packaged food ingredient list made from a single ingredient is exempt from the ingredients that have been volatilized or removed during processing.

Press release: link

From January 1, 2019, Both China and Australia Are Going to Exempt Most of Customs Duties by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

On November 8th, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi held the fifth round of China-Australia diplomatic and strategic dialogue with Australian Foreign Minister Payne in Beijing.

According to the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, since 2015, China and Australia have carried out four tariff reductions, and imports of goods tariffs from Australia have begun to gradually reduce. A considerable number of commodities will achieve zero tariffs within five years. China and Australia will carry out the fifth round of tariff concessions on New Year's Day in 2019. By then, almost all goods in bilateral trade will enjoy zero tariffs.

At present, China is Australia's largest trading partner and the largest export destination country. Australia is China's sixth largest export destination. In 2017, the bilateral trade volume between China and Australia was US$136.26 billion, increased by 25.9% compared to the year-on-year data.

Australian Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham said: "From January 1th, 2019, after 8 weeks, all Chinese goods entering Australia will be exempt from customs duties. China will also cancel the import product customs tariffs on a range of Australian products, including wine, infant formula and hone that have been exhibited on the CIIE".

In addition, Chinese and Australian companies signed 11 agreements which will effect for 5 years with a total value of nearly 15 billion Australian dollars (about 75.8 billion yuan). Covers a range of industries including travel, resources, infrastructure, e-commerce, and logistics services.

Press release: link

What Infant Food Supplements Are Unqualified in the "National Inspection" ? by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

On November 13th, the State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR)issued a sampling notice. The General Administration of the People's Republic of China recently conducted random inspections on 11 batches of special dietary foods from 6 enterprises in 4 provinces. One batch of infant food supplements failed to pass the sampling test, and the others were all qualified.

1.Unqualified product situation:

A batch of fruit and wheat flour infant food supplements with the trademark "momo", the origin of the product in Taiwan, China, the sodium detection value in the sampling is lower than the labeled amount “80% of the value” indicated on the product packaging label.

2.Unqualified analysis:

According to GB10769 National food safety standard Cereal-based complementary foods for infants and young children: sodium content ≤ 24.0mg/100kJ, the label value in this product is 6.09mg/10kJ, in line with product standards.

In the actual sampling process, the actual detection value of sodium for the product is 3.09mg/100kJ, which is lower than the labeled amount 80% of the product label value, which violates the GB13432 (National Food Safety Standard Prepackaged Special Dietary Food Label) section 4.3. 3 The actual content of energy and nutrients should not be less than 80% of the indicated value and should meet the requirements of the corresponding product standards.

3.Sampling inspection of unqualified products:

The food production enterprises and importers are enforced to trace their flow of products, recall unqualified products, analyze the reasons for rectification, and immediately take measures such as taking off the shelves and stopping sales to control the risks.

Press release: link

Notice on Organizing Drafting Technical Guidelines for Clinical Trials of Specific Full Nutrition FSMP Issued by SAMR by Nikolaas Tilkin-Franssens

In order to improve FSMP registration management, guide the clinical trials research and standardize the clinical trials process of specific full nutrition FSMP, ensure the scientificity and reliability of clinical trials results, protect the safe rights of consumers, the SAMR plans to public solicitate the research institutes on the technical guidelines for clinical trials of specific full nutrition FSMP. The notice is as follows:

1.The projects information

The technical guidelines for clinical trials of specific full nutrition FSMP for 8 diseases types including respiratory disease will be organized.

2.Requirements for applicants

The applicant shall be a drug clinical trial institution in the relevant field with the nutrition department and professional department related to FSMP studied and meet the conditions to carry out clinical trials research on FSMP, also has the preliminary scientific basis and relevant research work experience that could provide corresponding guarantee conditions to ensure to complete the drafting of technical guidelines timely and quality.

3.The application method and deadline

Please fill in the application form of the technical guidelines for clinical trials of specific full nutrition FSMP according to the requirements, and send the paper version (sealed, in triplicate) and the electronic version to the special food division of the SAMR before

Press release: link