Changes for importing into China

Brooke Hicks|Oct 22, 2021|No Comment

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China has introduced new requirements for importing food products into the country. As of 01 January 2022, China requires new food establishment registration and product labelling requirements for all imported food products from this date. These requirements apply to all countries importing into China including Australia.


So, what does this mean for you? The new requirements may impact your food manufacturing, processing, or storage business. So, let’s find out more about the changing requirements.


Changes to Product Labelling

All new labelling requirements will be enforced as of 01 January 2022. All existing labelling requirements are still mandatory, but the following must also be added:

  • All labels must be in Chinese and English languages
  • Establishment registration number must be included in the inner and outer packaging of all products imported into China.
    • For health foods or foods for special dietary purposes, labels must be printed onto the smallest sales unit packaging. No sticker/adhesive labels are allowed.
    • All other foods can use over-stickering or adhesive labels.


Registering your business with China

If you are currently exporting food products to China, you may need to register your business with China. As the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment explains “Some businesses may be required to apply to the department for registration with China as early as prior to 22 October 2021.”


Who needs to register?

If you manufacture, process or store food products listed below, you will need to apply to the DAWE to facilitate respiration with China.

  • casings
  • honey
  • edible fats and oils
  • stuffed pasta
  • edible grains and milled grain products including malt
  • fresh and dehydrated vegetables
  • dried beans
  • seasonings
  • nuts and seeds
  • dried fruits
  • unroasted coffee beans and cocoa beans
  • health foods
  • food for special dietary purposes.

If you are already exporting these products to China, you need to apply to the department to be registered with China by the 22 October 2021. After this date, rolling submissions will be accepted but you may face delays or trade disruptions when the new requirements come into effect.  


If you only manufacture, process or store prescribed meat, dairy and seafood products, you do not need to complete any additional registration steps at this time. The existing application and registration processes remain in place.


What do I do once registered?

Once you are registered, you will be issued with an establishment number. This number needs to be included on your product packaging (inner & outer packaging) to meet China’s labelling requirements.


Still confused?

Head over to the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water & the Environment website to find out more or contact our team of Solutions Specialists for expert knowledge on 1800 845 845 or via our online form.