On April 12, 2021, the General Administration of Customs of the People's Republic of China issued administrative measures of the People's Republic of China to ensure food safety when importing or exporting, which came into force on January 1, 2022 (hereinafter referred to as Measures) and which will significantly complicate the current food export-import procedure. Food production and trade for the import or export of dietary supplements and foodstuffs is subject to the relevant regulations of the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC).
All food importers or exporters in China must comply with these Measures, and import or export food manufacturers and sellers are responsible for the safety of import or export food produced or sold by them.
A foreign country (region) applies for the initial export of a certain type (kind) of food to China.
Overseas exporters or agents exporting food to China (hereinafter referred to as "overseas exporters or agents") must complete the filing formalities with GACC. Food importers must also go through formalities when submitting documents to local customs authorities.
When going through formalities, foreign exporters, agents or importers of food products are responsible for the authenticity and validity of the documents they provide. A list of registered overseas food exporters or agents and importers will be published by the GACC.
The food importer must establish a registration system for the import and sale of food products to reliably record the name, net content/characteristics and quantity of food, production date, production or import batch number, expiration date, name, address and contact information. information about the foreign exporter or buyer, delivery date and other content, and store the corresponding vouchers. Records and vouchers must be kept for at least six months after the expiration date of the food; if no expiration date is specified, such records and vouchers must be kept for at least two years after the sale.
The food importer should establish an inspection system for overseas exporters and overseas manufacturers, focusing on ensuring that food products comply with Chinese laws and regulations and national food safety standards.
The PRC customs authorities must, in accordance with the requirements of supervision and administration, carry out on-site inspection of food products for import. The packaging, labels and labels of imported food products must comply with Chinese laws, regulations and national food safety standards. Where there should be instructions in accordance with the requirements of the law, there should also be instructions in Chinese.
For fresh and frozen meat products intended for import, the inner and outer packaging must have strong, legible and identifiable written characters in Chinese and English or in Chinese and the language of the exporting country (region) indicating the following content: country (region) origin, product name, manufacturer's registration number and batch number. Specification, place of origin (state/province/city), destination, date of manufacture, expiration date and storage temperature must be written in Chinese on the outer package. The destination is the People's Republic of China and the official inspection and quarantine sign of the exporting country (region) must be affixed.
For products for import, the inner and outer packages must have strong, legible and identifiable written characters in Chinese and English or Chinese and the language of the exporting country (region) indicating the following contents: product name and scientific data. name, specifications, production date, batch number, expiration date and storage conditions, production method (sea fishing, freshwater fishing and aquaculture), production zone (sea fishing areas, freshwater fishing countries or regions, as well as the country or region where the product is located aquaculture), the name, registration number and address (specific state/province/city) of all participating production and processing establishments (including fishing vessels, processing vessels, transport vessels and independent cold stores), and the destination must be the People's Republic of China.
Chinese labels on imported medical products and special diet food products must be printed on the packaging itself and must not be pasted.
If there are provisions for special labeling on the inner and outer packaging of foodstuffs for import, such provisions shall prevail