China: Food Manufacture and Food Business License Rules

Posted By: Selerant RSA


China State Food and Drug Administration Act 16 "Food manufacture license management approach" and Act 17 "Food business license management approach" were signed on August 31, 2015 and took effect on October 1, 2015.

The main contents of the new approach of issuing food manufacture and food business licenses are the following:

1. Simplifying the procedure. Food circulation license and food catering licenses are merged into one license: Food business license. Food additive manufacture management belong to "Food manufacture license management approach".

2. Clarifying the principles. Food manufacture license should follow the 'one manufacture one license' principle, which means that one manufacture should apply for only one license even if he manufactures multiple kinds of foods.

3. Dividing the license according to different food categories. The food manufacture activity is categorized according to 31 food categories, such as grain processed products, edible oil, fats and its products, condiments, meat, dairy, beverage, instant food, biscuit, canned food, frozen drinks, quick-frozen food, potato and puffed food, candy, tea and tea products, sugar, aquatic products, starch and starch products, bakery, bean products, bee products, health food, special medical formula food, infant food, special dietary food, other food etc.


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4. Food manufacture license for special food is stricter than normal food. Special food manufacturer should not only qualify for the production of normal food. They also need to provide additional documents related to manufacture quality management system , registration and records for the special food category.

5. Specifying the license number rules. Food manufacture license number is SC ("production" of the Chinese phonetic alphabet) and 14 number digits. Number from left to right are 3 food category code, 2 province (autonomous regions and municipalities directly under the central government) code, 2 city (area) code, 2 county (district) code, 4 serial code and 1 check code.

6. Specifying the mandatory contents in license. Food manufacture license should include: name of the producer, the social credit code, legal representative, address, manufacture address, food category, license number, validity date, daily supervision authority, daily supervision personnel, complaint line, the license issuing agencies, license issuing people, issuance date and QR code.

7. Enhancing operability. If the Food manufacturer is applying for a modified or renewed food manufacture license, SFDA may omit the onsite inspection process as long as the manufacturer declares that the manufacture conditions have remained the same.

For more information please visit China Food and Drug Administration web pages (in Chinese):