China Plastics Industry Highlights
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China is one of the fastest growing health food markets in the world. With rapid economic growth and
continued improvement of its peoples’ livelihoods, the demand for health food from China’s 1.3 billion
people has expanded tremendously over the last 20 years. Although China does not maintain official
statistics for health foods, industry professionals estimate that China's consumption of health foods, which
totaled $4.4 billion (RMB30 billion) in 2003, reached $10 -13 billion (RMB70-90 billion) in 2008, growing at
a compound annual growth rate of 18-25% during the period. Given China’s current annual per capita
consumption of health foods is approximately $10—which is far below that of many western countries—
experts believe that China’s health food industry should continue to enjoy annual growth of 20-30% for
the foreseeable future. By 2010, China’s annual sales of health foods should reach $15 -19 billion
(RMB100-120 billion). Such a fast expanding market should present sales opportunities for overseas
suppliers that provide health foods that boost immune systems, fight aging, lower blood pressure and
glucose levels, cleanse bowels, promote digestion, reduce weight, promote bone density, etc.
Market Access Issues
z Health foods (a category that includes dietary supplements in China) can be sold in China either as
functional foods or general foods. Functional foods may make claims to health benefits on the label,
while general foods may not.
Functional foods have to be registered with the China State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA)
before being sold in the Chinese market.
To date, China has defined 27 functions for health foods. Registered foods can only claim these
Functional foods have to go through animal and/or human tests