China’s new rules on food imports will take effect on January 1st as planned, according to Bloomberg. This is even after trading partners including the US and Europe urged Beijing to delay the rollout, saying the policy would further disrupt supply chains.
Food imports into China will have to meet new registration, inspection and labelling requirements, customs authorities said. The measures, which were first announced in April, cover a broad range of products from royal jelly to vegetable oils and infant food.
Diplomats from seven economies, which also include Australia, Japan, Canada and Switzerland, have urged China to delay the policy for at least 18 months, citing a lack of clarity on how it will be implemented. They’re concerned that a failure to comply will result in costly, last-minute logistics delays, and risk disruptions to global food supply chains at a time when the world is already experiencing serious shipping bottlenecks due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The new rules require all overseas food manufacturers, processors and storage facilities to be registered with Chinese customs. Producers of goods that belong to 18 specific categories would require recommendations by authorities in their home countries, while others must self-register via an online platform.