Recently, local FDA departments find that there still exist obvious problems in the labeling of infant formula milk powder in China. In order to further regulate the labels, on 9 December 2016, CFDA issued a Notice (Notice No. 168 of 2016) on the examination of infant formula milk powder labeling. Imported infant milk powder products are included in this examination as well.
1. Responsibility of Manufacturers
Within 3 months since 9 December 2016, relevant manufacturers shall carry out the self-examination and self-correction on the labeling of infant formula milk powder, and report relevant results to local FDA departments within 15 days when the self- correction is finished.
For overseas manufacturers, the self-correction results shall also be reported to the local FDA where their sales agent located.
Main Examination Items
True, accurate, not misleading, etc.
Source of raw materials
No fuzzy information such as “进口奶源(imported milk source)”, “源自国外牧场(from oversea pasture)”, “生态牧场(ecologic pasture)”.
Ingredients list and nutrition information
In accordance with GB 13432-2013 and relevant requirements.
Mandatory contents such as “food production license number” shall be indicated for domestic products.
No claims such as “零添加(zero added)”, “不含有(no contain)” for the materials that are forbidden to contain in the products.
No intimation about the function of improving intelligence, strengthening resistance or immunity, protecting intestine, etc.
No exaggerated or misleading contents, no words such as “人乳化(like human milk)”, “母乳化(like breast milk)” or similar words.
2. Responsibility of Distributers
The infant formula milk powder distributers shall establish the purchase inspection record system to check if the labeling of infant formula milk powder is compliant, and store the products in accordance with the food safety requirements. Moreover, for imported infant formula milk powder, qualified Chinese label and Chinese specification (if there is corresponding original specification) should be checked as well.
3. Examination Items of Local FDA
Key examination objects
Infant formula milk powder manufacturers, distributers.
Key examination places
Packaging workshops, final products warehouses, supermarkets, wholesale markets, maternal and infant stores, etc.
Key examination contents
I. Product name, content and function claims, mandatory contents, etc.
II. Clamp down on behaviors such as false labeling of production date and expiry date, illegally using other’s brand to produce, etc.
I. If there are incompliant label contents, local FDA will order enterprise to correct.
II. If there are serious illegal behaviors which may constitute a crime, such as make and sell fake products by fake labeling, local FDA will transfer the case to judicial organs.
III. If there are other issues such as unfair competition, false advertising, etc., local FDA will transfer the case to relevant authorities.
4. Legal Basis of the Examination
The food safety law
Regulations on the Supervision of Dairy Product Quality and Safety
Regulations on Food Labeling
GB 7718-2011 General Rules for the Labeling of Prepackaged Food
GB 28050-2011 General Rules for Nutrition Labeling of Prepackaged Foods
GB 10765-2010 Infant Formula
GB 10767-2010 Older Infants and Young Children Formula
Local FDA will carry out the examination in accordance with above regulations. Relevant enterprises shall pay more attention to these regulations, and conduct the self- examination and self-correction in accordance with them as well.
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