China Focus: Allergen labelling, African swine flu, blockchain and more feature in our round-up

By Pearly Neo

- Last updated on GMT

Allergen labelling, African swine flu, blockchain and more feature in this edition of China Focus.
Allergen labelling, African swine flu, blockchain and more feature in this edition of China Focus.

Related tags China Label

Allergen labelling, African swine flu, blockchain and more feature in this edition of China Focus.

Packaged foods in China: Compulsory allergen labelling and negative claim crackdown proposed

Allergen labelling in China for pre-packaged foods​ could soon become mandatory under new plans unveiled by the Chinese National Health Commission (NHC).

The NHC has released draft GB7718 (General Rules for the Labelling of Pre-Packaged Foods) for public consultation.

This proposes amending the labelling standard to better protect consumers from exposure to potentially false or misleading labelling information.

Palm oil, meat and seafood the big winners as China ramps up imports due to African swine fever crisis

China is increasingly importing more meat, palm oil and seafood​ due to the impact of African swine fever (ASF) outbreak, which led to the mass culling of large numbers of its domestic herd.

This has in turn resulted in more demand for other commodities such as palm oil and seafood within the country, according to Fitch Solutions.

According to the Fitch Solutions Agribusiness team, meat consumption by kg per capita (poultry, pork, beef, veal) has grown from 42.1kg in 2000 to a projected 45.4 kg per capita in 2019 (down from 52.5kg in 2018 due to ASF).

Baked is best: Immunity enhancement better from baked bread than steamed - study

Baked bread may help enhance immunity and aid weight loss​ more than steamed bread, according to researchers in China.

Steamed and baked bread are traditional staple foods in China and Western countries respectively. But researchers added: “It is unclear whether different processing methods change the biological functions of foods and how these functions are evaluated in the human body​.”

Hence, they sought to study the cytokine network and central metabolic pathway (CMP) network.

Beefing up transparency: Australian firm launches blockchain beef traceability platform in China

BeefLedger is launching a blockchain platform in China​ in what it claims will increase transparency and streamline transactions in the supply chain.

China is the biggest market by volume for Australian beef, with exports rising 73% last year.

Australians consume on average 26kg per person of beef per year, while Chinese consumption is considerably lower at 6kg.

However, Chinese beef consumption is growing rapidly, Warwick Powell, chairman at Beefledger told FoodNavigator-Asia​: “Factors driving this include rising household incomes, greater consumer awareness of and confidence in the quality of Australian beef, and protein-switching as a result of the African Swine Flu impact on pork supplies​.”

Hot findings: Higher chilli intake linked to lower chronic kidney disease in Chinese adults

Researchers from China, Qatar, and USA have reported that a high chilli intake is associated with a lower risk of chronic kidney disease​ (CKD) among the adult population in China.

The prevalence of CKD was 13.1% in non-chilli consumers and 7.4% among those with chilli intake above 50 g/day.

Current studies on animal models have shown the active component of chilli, capsaicin, has beneficial effects on kidney function and preventing kidney damage, however, this assertion has not been investigated in humans and no population studies have assessed the association between chili consumption and CKD.

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