US food exporters to China asked to file data to FDA
THE US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is asking companies exporting food to China to provide data, in respone to Chinese demands from information from exporters, in order to prevent trade disruption, reported the American Journal of Transportation.
“While the United States continues to engage with China at multiple levels to ensure minimal new requirements for the United States, the FDA is taking proactive steps to maintain current market access for FDA-regulated firms in the United States that export food to China,” said the FDA advisory.
New Chinese Customs requirements go into effect on January 12 and the FDA is asking food exporters to China to submit information to the FDA to meet the Chinese deadline.
The FDA advisory explained that in April, 2021, “China’s General Administration of Customs (GACC) announced new registration requirements that affect all overseas food manufacturers, processors, and storage facilities of food products exported to China. These requirements are described in China’s Decree 248 and will be in effect on January 1.”
The FDA said “Articles 7 and 8 of the Decree require the exporting countries’ competent authorities to recommend registration of establishments involved in the export to China of certain food categories.”
For products that do not fall within the 18 product categories listed in Article 7 and above, China’s GACC launched a system to facilitate self-registration.
The food categories include meat and meat products, aquatic products, dairy products, bird nests and bird nest products, bee products, eggs and egg products, edible oils and fats, stuffed wheaten products, edible grains, milled grain industry products and malt, fresh and dehydrated vegetables, dried beans, nuts and seeds, dried fruits, unroasted coffee beans and cocoa beans
and foods for special dietary purposes.
China Customs said it will continue to recognise existing registrations for establishments that export meat and meat products, aquatic products, dairy and infant formula products and bird nests and bird nest products.
The FDA currently facilitates the registration of US firms for seafood, dairy, and infant formula products by providing the customs with documents that identify certified establishments and products that meet applicable US requirements.
US firms that “have applied in the FDA’s Export Listing Module (ELM) and are currently listed as certified by customs to export seafood, dairy, and infant formula products to China do not need to take any action at this time related to registration”.
The Office of the US Trade Representative “has asked the GACC to confirm its understanding that US establishments that export all other categories of products may self-register. To date the GACC has not confirmed this interpretation of Decree 248 and has failed to provide adequate further guidance for the United States”.