Sinew Consulting Group

What about the Regular Foods Importation into China

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In 2017, the AQSIQ in Mainland China announced that a total of 233 batches of imported food from 34 countries or regions were tested as unqualified for import (for September). Among those, 67 batches (28.8%) were rejected because of use of food additives beyond allowed scope. Non-allowed use of additives is one of the most frequent causes of rejection to importation of food products.

China has requirements for the use of food additives, which basically works with positive lists of allowed additives – mainly contained in GB 2760-2014. The allowed additives list and their usage limitation (maximum amount) are shown on CFDA website. It, however, the key point is how to interpret the requirements.

What if your food additive is not on GB 2760-2014 ? The new additives will be allowed as long as specifically approved by NHFPC – which upon approval issues the corresponding standard for the new additive, including the allowed use scope.

In terms of ingredients, additives are not the only category that cause problems. Some functional ingredients (you may think it is ingredients for common foods in your culture) or some food ingredients that are new to Chinese (it may be traditional in your culture) will be rejected at boarder.

We will suggest paying attention on ingredient review carefully. If you are not able to do so by yourself, hire some good experts to do so.

The other of the most frequent causes of rejection is the non-compliance label. Not just the language translation, you have to learn the label regulation required by CFDA and other governmental agencies. Either you export to China via traditional channel or e-commerce channel. For example, you should label the proper population or non-proper population while you did not label for certain categories. Others, like the requirements on GMO, claims and advertisements, fresh foods nutrition, nutrition supplements, national standards, shelf life, are all need to pay attention to.

It looks complicated, and so you also can hire experts to do it for you. To get on the detention list or the non-qualified list will cause the reputation loss and cost loss the same time.