CFDA promulgated the Announcement to Further Regulate Health Food Supervision and Management and Crack down on Illegal Activities at the end of September 2013. The announcement bans OEM production, operation and importation of health food. The Announcement is expected to be formally implemented on January 1, 2014. Please click here for the detailed information related to the Announcement.
More than half of health food brands will be impacted
According to an analysis, at present the proportion of OEM production in the Chinese health food sector is relatively high. After the new policy is executed, the domestic health food market will undoubtedly face a difficult adjustment period. The actual data predicts that more than half of health food brands would be impacted after the formal implementation of the ban. Many enterprises without a license or currently using illegal health food approval numbers will be forced to withdraw from the market.
Customers would attach greater importance to brands
In recent years, China has attached greater importance to supervision and enforcement of regulations managing the health food industry. The current regulatory system is certainly a step in the right direction, however continued efforts need to be made to bring it up to par with the standards of the European or America health food (functional food) sectors. A registration based system needs to be designed and implemented rather than a notification system. Safety and efficacy of products would then be primarily assessed from an active ingredient standpoint and overseas data could be potentially drawn upon to substantiate functional claims.
Recently, the State Council issued Several Opinions on Promoting the Development of Health Service Industry, which put forward that the current goal for expansion would see the total value of health service industry reach more than 8,000 billion RMB by 2020. In this manifesto the government explicitly indicated that health food industry would be one of the five pillar industries.