(China Briefing – Dezan Shira & Associates)
China is updating its food safety law for the first time since 2009, in what is hailed as the harshest food safety regulation in China so far. The 2015 Food Safety Law will have a significant impact on both domestic and foreign firms involved in food business in China.
The new food safety law, which will take effect on October 1, 2015, signals that the Chinese government is finally cracking down on food scandals that have plagued the country in recent years, leading to social media uproar and poor consumer confidence in domestic products.
These scandals have actually been a boon for foreign firms, as the growing Chinese middle class has turned to foreign imports, trusting these over local products. As a case in point, foreign brands currently account for 80 percent of market share of infant formula in China. Food safety disasters such as the infamous 2008 melamine scandal, in which tainted infant formula tragically left 6 infants dead and 300,000 severely ill, has driven this market preference for foreign imports. Click here to read more.