China Focus: Youkuai’s new distribution strategy, barriers to cultivated meat development, sampling reluctance and more

By Hui Ling Dang

- Last updated on GMT

China Focus: Youkuai’s new distribution strategy, barriers to cultivated meat development, sampling reluctance and more

Related tags China

Youkuai’s new distribution deal, soy protein isolate and whey protein health claims, barriers to cultivated meat development, sampling reluctance among cautious Chinese consumers, research findings, and more feature in this edition of China Focus.

Immunity benefits: China adds soy protein isolate, whey protein to health foods raw material directory

China health foods authorities are adding soy protein isolate and whey protein to the country’s Health Food Raw Material Directory – Nutrition Supplement.  

Products containing these two ingredients could make specific health claims of “strengthening immunity” from October 1, 2023.

Dietary protein has garnered attention in China during COVID-19, with a survey​ showing that over 95% of the Chinese population believe that dairy protein could confer immunity-boosting benefits.

Diabetic benefit: EPA found to reduce cardiovascular risk in patients – meta analysis

Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) alone, and not combined with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), reduced the risk of cardiovascular diseases in diabetic patients, according to a new Chinese study.

This was based on a data analysis on eight randomised controlled trials undertaken on omega-3 fatty acids and cardiovascular outcomes in diabetic patients, involving 57,754 participants.

Regulatory approval and cost control are key barriers to cultivated meat development in China – Jimi Biotech

Chinese cultivated meat firm Jimi Biotech foresees that it will take a few more years before the alternative protein obtains regulatory approval in the country, although it is optimistic about investor interest and consumer acceptance.

The firm’s cultivated meat prototype is produced entirely from animal cell and without plant scaffolding, which is said to be “closer to the taste and nutrition value” of regular meat.

China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs has listed cultivated meat as a key area for future food manufacturing in its 14th Five-Year Plan, while the China National Centre for Food Safety Risk Assessment (CFSA) is looking to establish a special group focusing on the regulatory framework of cultivated meat in China this year.

‘Not a quick win’: China’s plant-based brand Youkuai on collaboration crusade to crack the world’s largest consumer market

The China plant-based sector has lost “some of its hype”, claims Shanghai-based Youkuai, one of the category’s pioneers in the country that has recently announced a significant new distribution deal.

Youkuai recently partnered with Beijing-based Usource, which specialises in distribution for meat and plant-based brands in North China, to expand its B2B2C distribution across China.

Its founder Franklin Yao shared that the firm’s focus is now on product development, and thus wanted a distributor to undertake sales and marketing to better understand its plant-based customers coming from each channel.

Cautious Chinese travellers: Food and beverage brands need to brush up on experience innovation to overcome sampling reluctance

F&B brands with a stake in the travel retail space need to increase efforts to create novel retail experiences because cautious Chinese consumers are no longer as keen on sampling and tasting products post-pandemic.

With China finally having opened its borders earlier this year, the travel retail industry is pinning many of its growth aspirations on the resurgence of the Chinese traveller.

However, it is well-known that Chinese consumers place a great deal of importance on sensory experience when it comes to making purchases.

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