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Food Contact Materials
On March 13, 2024, the National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China (NHC) issued an announcement (No. 2 of 2024) on the approval of 23 “Three New Foods”, including 6 new food raw materials, 12 new food additives, and 5 new food-related products.
On Feb 9, 2024, the European Commission proposed a new draft aimed at amending the existing regulations on food contact materials (FCMs), involving a ban on bisphenol A (BPA) and its derivatives. The draft amends (EU) No 10/2011 and (EC) No 1895/2005, and repeals (EU) 2018/213. Bisphenol A (BPA), known as 4,4'-dihydroxydiphenylpropane (CAS No: 80-05-7), is a monomer or starting substance widely used in the manufacture of polycarbonate, polysulfone, epoxy resins, and other resins. It is extensively used in plastics, varnish coatings, inks, adhesives, and rubbers.
In 2023, the National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China (NHC) issued five announcements (No. 1 of 2023, No. 3 of 2023, No. 5 of 2023, No. 8 of 2023, No. 10 of 2023) regarding “Three New Foods”, approving a total of 74 products. Among these, 29 are new food-related products, including those with an expanded use. Furthermore, according to the official website of NHC and the China National Center for Food Safety Risk Assessment (CFSA), throughout 2023: 31 applications for new food-related products were officially accepted; 16 new food-related products were issued for public comments (including those with expanded scope of use); and 19 new food-related products accepted in 2021, 2022 and 2023 were issued a rejection decision.
On November 23, 2023, we hosted a free webinar on the changes in the new standards for China food contact materials and articles food enterprises’ response. The playback of the webinar is now available. If you missed this webinar you can watch it free by following the link here. Many questions were raised during the webinar. We have collected the questions and made a Q&A summary as follows:
On September 25, 2023, China National Health Commission (NHC) issued 17 national standards for food contact materials. Among them, there are 5 product standards (ink, plastic, metal, rubber, composite materials) and 12 testing standards. In addition to the revision of the existing standards, new product standard and testing standards have been enacted, such as GB 4806.14-2023 ink standard. The series of standards released have brought significant changes to the regulatory requirements for food contact materials, and upstream and downstream enterprises in the food contact industry need to respond in time. CIRS Group will launch an online training session on November 23 to analyze the new regulatory requirements for food contact materials and help enterprises respond promptly and accurately.
On September 25, 2023, the National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China (NHC) released announcement No.6, 2023 regarding 85 national food safety standards, including 5 for food contact materials and articles (plastic, metal, rubber, composite materials and articles, and ink), and GB 31604.1-2023 General Rules for Migration Test of Food Contact Metal Materials and Articles. Please click here to check out the major changes in the five updated standards for food contact materials and articles. The list of standards translated is presented in the table below for your kind reference. If you want to get the full translation, please do not hesitate to contact CIRS at with the Order Form attached. If you are also interested in the English versions of other published standards, feel free to contact us.
On September 25, 2023, the National Health Commission (NHC) released announcement No. 6, 2023 regarding 85 national food safety standards, including National Food Safety Standard - Tea (GB 31608-2023), along with three modification documents. Among these standards, 17 are related to food contact materials, including five for food contact materials products standards, two general principles, and ten inspection methods. Of particular importance is the introduction of a new food contact ink standard. Additionally, revisions have been made to existing standards pertaining to food-contact plastics, metals, rubber, and composite materials. These updates further clarify the management principles and requirements and the approved use of fundamental materials, aiming to bolster food safety, ensure consumers’ well-being, and address practical industry concerns.
On August 11, 2023, the European Commission released the Commission Regulation (EU) 2023/1627, amending Annex I to Regulation (EU) No 10/2011 by adding bis(2-ethylhexyl)cyclohexane-1,4-dicarboxylate (FCM No 1079) into the authorized substance list for food contact plastic materials.
EU 2023/1442 amending Annex I to Regulation (EU) No.10/2011 on plastic materials and articles intended to come into contact with food was published on July 11, 2023.
China offers a wide range of food categories in addition to complex food regulations and standards. It is crucial to precisely determine whether the raw materials and additives used in a food product comply with Chinese regulatory standards before it is imported or launched on the market. How do you verify the compliance of food raw materials? What is the scope of use and amount of food additives permitted? Typically, these types of queries call for food enterprises to carry out multiple inquiries and research.