This fall, one of our partners, FactoryAudits.com exhibited at one of the largest trade shows in Asia, the Global Sources – China Sourcing Fair in Hong Kong.
FactoryAudits.com specializes in product inspections and Factory Audits to help customers ensure product quality, secure imports and save time and money.
FactoryAudits.com was proud to be one of nearly 7,500 exhibitors who spent the month of October networking with more than 62,000 buyers, a record amount of attendees for the Hong Kong show.
The fourteen shows were held concurrently at the Asia World-Expo in Hong Kong and attracted some of the world’s top companies – such as Best Buy, Samsung, Levi’s, Office Depot, Toys “R” Us and more.
If you are interested in learning more about their product inspection & factory auditing services please click here.
The federal municipality of Tianjin, China is located an hour and a half outside of Beijing, on the coast of the Bohai Bay. Its prime location has attracted many of the world’s top enterprises including Motorola, Toyota, Samsung, Nestle, and LG.
As the fourth largest port in mainland China, Tianjin is a regional hub for shipping and logistics industries, both of which are supported by its close proximity to the national capital, Beijing. Leading industries in Tianjin include mobile phone, aerospace, alternative energy, and automotive production.
In addition to Tianjin, Understand-China.com includes many detailed investment guides for the top manufacturing regions. Ready to Explore? Start Now! It’s Free!Tags:
The 2011 Spring Canton fair came to a close yesterday, May 5th. This year’s import and export fair is considered a monumental session in the event’s 50 year history. Held each year, in Spring and Autumn, businesspeople from all over the world pour their way through the 55 million square meter facility over the course of the 15 day event in Guangzhou. The deals transacted from this session totaled more than 36 billion U.S. dollars, up 5.8% from last year’s Spring session. The fair attracted a record number of foreign traders as well; more than 207,000 foreign traders from more than 150 countries passed through the fair this year.
Although there were fears of this year’s numbers being down due to the economic conditions, business transactions this Spring were very much so on the rise.
The amount of exports with some of the big players rose quite a bit this year. Buyers from the United States entered into 12.4 percent more deals than last spring. European buyers also increased their transactions by 14 percent. Even more impressive than that are the number of deals enacted with the emerging markets of Brazil and Russia, that rose 30 percent this year.
Other countries however saw a decrease in transactions for various reasons. Reports have indicated that trade dropped by 19 percent with Japan due to the various reasons associated with the recent disasters.
Overall, the largest trade fair in China was another giant success. If anyone has any stories or pictures from this Spring’s show, we would love to see them!
The word is out. Chinese consumers have gotten wind of the wonderfully tasting and healthy nut, the pecan. After several segments on Beijing TV and other local TV stations on the health advantages of pecans, Chinese consumers have began to expand their nut repertoire. And where can they find these fine nuts? America, that’s where. Approximately two-thirds of the world’s pecans are produced in the United States.
Demand for American pecans in China has been so strong, that prices have nearly doubled in the last three years. According to the USDA, the average price of shelled pecans in 2007 was around $1.00/pound and last year, in 2010, prices jumped to nearly $2.25/ pound.
This increase in demand has led to a large shift in American pecan exports. As you can see in the chart, in 2005, total exports were only 30% (China being only 1% of that.) And only four years later, China grew to nearly 30% of our exports, bumping up total exports to more than 50% of domestic production.
And demand is showing no sign of waning. Total production numbers, however, have not yet began to be affected due to the nature of the pecan tree. It takes ten years for a pecan tree to begin producing any sizable amount. And even then, the trees have alternating “on” and “off” years. So as more farmers start to up their acreage of pecan trees, we will have to be patient and shell out for our favorite holiday pies and fruit cakes.Tags: american agriculture, american pecans, china agricutlure, chinese pecans, pecan demand, pecan exports, pecans, pecans in china.
Have you finished planning your trip to this year’s Spring Canton Fair yet? The world’s largest international trade show is almost underway. As always, the Import and Export Fair will be held in Guangzhou, the center of China’s trade region China Import and Export Complex. The fair features over 50,000 exhibits spans over two weeks.
Phase I is set to begin this Friday and lasts through Tuesday, April 19th. Products to on exhibition during Phase I are the following:
Phases II and III will be on the following schedules:
Phase 2: April 23-27, 2011 | 9:30-18:00
* Consumer Goods
* Home Decorations
Phase 3: May 1-5, 2011 | 9:30-18:00
* Textiles & Garments
* Office Supplies, Cases & Bags, and Recreation Products
* Medicines, Medical Devices and Health Products
* Food & Native Produce
* International Pavilion
Additionally, the China International Furniture Fair (CIFF) will be held in conjunction with Phase I and Phase II. Everything from modern home furniture to office and laboratory furniture will be available. Home Furniture will be on display from March 18 to the 21st and office furniture will be available from March 27 to March 30th.
If you haven’t signed up yet, don’t worry there is still time. You need to apply for an “invitation” through the Fair’s website here. Admission is free, but registration typically takes about a week to get your confirmation. Once you receive confirmation, print out the information and take it with you along with a photo ID and a passport photo (or you may take one there).
Spring Canton Fair Location: No. 380, Yuejiang Zhong Road, Guangzhou, China.
Other Canton Fair Posts:
Please do not hesitate to post any questions, comments or advice for future fair adventurers below.Tags: Canton Fair, canton fair dates, canton fair details, China Canton Fair, China Import and Export Fair, Spring canton fair.
In January, the Food Safety Modernization Act was signed into law and the FDA is currently working its way through the implementation process. Perhaps the most groundbreaking part of this law is the requirement for food producers and manufacturers and processors to verify and certify their suppliers’ food safety processes.
Why start worrying about imported food and ingredients now? Over the last decade, more and more food has become available on America’s shelves and a good amount of it is imported; 15% of food to be exact. Certain foods have much higher percentages; such as 75% of seafood, 20% of vegetables and 50% of all fruits are imported. The FDA however, hasn’t had the bandwidth or the manpower to inspect more than 1 percent of all the imported food in most recent years.
What does this mean for food manufacturers and producers with international supply chains, from say, China? The new law places the responsibility on the business owners to verify and certify that their international suppliers are complying with the standards set by the FDA in the U.S. The goal of the FSMA is to ensure that imported food is just as safe as the food that is produced domestically and will require a great deal of cooperation and partnership from many different countries and agencies.
What is compliance and how do businesses become certified? At this point, the FDA is still creating the guidelines for how to become certified. However, food safety experts have suggested implementing a preventative, risk-based plan like HACCP. Although the FSMA rules will require actions beyond having a solid HACCP plan, it is said to be a great starting point for companies working towards future compliance.
Industry experts also suggest that as companies prepare for compliance, they should undergo a “gap analysis” to locate weaknesses and shortcomings in their food safety plans. With the results from the gap analysis, companies will then be able to address the issues before an FDA inspection, which when paired with a HACCP plan can help expedite the process for compliance.
The FDA must accomplish the following tasks by the indicated dates: (taken from the FDA’s website)
– Preventive Controls for Facilities – June 2012
– Produce Safety Standards – January 2013
Inspection, Compliance & Response
– Rules and Process for Administrative Detention – May 2011
– Recall Authority (May be mandated only by the Commissioner of the FDA or the Secretary for Health and Human Services) – Currently Active
– Suspension of Registration Regulations – May 2011
– Foreign Supplier Verification Program Guidance – January 2012
– Accredited Third-Party Certification Program – January 2013
– Mandatory Certification for High Risk Foods – Currently Active (but the definition of “high risk foods” is still in development)
The latest update in FSMA:
As the first big accomplishment of the Food Safety Modernization Act, the FDA has released a user-friendly food recall database. The database is an easier way to allow consumers to access up-to-date information regarding current and past food safety scares. The database provides information sorted by type, such as food, drugs, animal health etc., but can also be searched by date, food type, or brand. If available, the product labels will be posted as well. This new database is one step in the long process of the food safety act’s implementation that will help create better communication between the governmental agencies and consumers.
You can also sign up for daily or weekly updates that deliver the most recent recalls directly to your inbox.
The database can be viewed and searched here: http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/default.htmTags: food safety, foreign suppliers certification, fsma, importers, importers and food safety, importing food.
Last month, China’s newest Five Year Plan (FYP) was developed at the Annual Sessions of China’s National People’s Congress. At the center of the 12th FYP is possibly their most ambitious energy goal to date. The new plan calls for a reduction of energy intensity by 16 percent over the next five years. As the goal is quite bold, it is possible considering that during the previous FYP, China managed to reduce energy by 20 percent.
Other goals of the FYP include a plan to reduce pollution and reduce China’s dependency on fossil fuels. China is aiming to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 17 percent and to increase the use of non-fossil fuels from 8 percent (current state) to 11.4 percent in 5 years.
When it comes to implementation, China has decided to encourage development and foreign investment in industries that will increase their ability to move towards these green goals. They will be executing programs to support growth in the high-end manufacturing industries such as clean energy, various service industries and environmental protection.
Of course, there are supporters and opponents of the newest FYP. Supporters of the plan include environmental protection groups and clean energy groups who are encouraged by China’s step towards a greener country. Some opponents say however, that the plan could be too ambitious and that some of the other goals included in the plan may be conflicting with their green initiatives; such as the target to build upwards of 40 new airports over the next five years.
Ambitious or not, achievable or not, changes are on their way for foreign investors and where different incentives will be placed in the upcoming years.Tags: China Energy, china energy goals, china five year plan, china investment, china's new energy goals, china's new plan, five year plan.
We found this very useful FDA interview on the provisions applied to importers under of the Food Safety Modernization Act. David Elder, the Director of Regional Operations from the FDA, covers the steps being taken for implementation.
Interesting Points from the video:
-Any real certifications will most likely not happen for at least 12 months or more… “Implementing this law will require over a dozen separate rulemakings and at least 10 guidance documents. The implementation of the legislation will take more than three years.” Source
-Importers will be in the process of setting up their verification system, but the exact rules and requirements of certification are in progress.
-Businesses in the food industry are urged to start thinking about what this means for them and begin preparing for more strict inspections and regulations.
Q: Why do I need to act now if it will take the FDA a few years to write any new rules?
A: Reviewing your company’s food-safety, record-keeping and product-tracking procedures can lead to performance improvements and innovation. By being in the forefront of efforts to improve food safety and providing credible information to regulators and consumers, companies can not only get a leg up on the competition, but begin marketing their food safety practices to the public.
Within one and a half years, all registered facilities will be required to conduct a hazard analysis, implement preventive controls and develop a food safety plan to document the monitoring, correction, and verification of preventive controls. The food safety plan and all related documents must be made available to FDA during inspections. As part of its food safety plan, a facility may be required to document sanitation procedures, a recall plan, a food allergen control program, supplier verification activities, and environmental sampling testing. Plans such as these take time to create and implement; it is never too early to be safe.
In preparation for the FDA audits, our partner company FactoryAudits.com offers comprehensive Food Safety Assessments that analyze your facilities’ HACCP plan implementation, chemical control processes, pest control processes, sanitation risks and hazards and much more.
Keep checking back with us as we will continue to post about the progression of this Act.Tags: food safety, food safety and haccp, food safety and supply chains, food safety modernization act, fsma, haccp, haccp certification.
Did you miss Part One?… Food Safety Modernization Act: The Breakdown (Part 1 – The Facts)
Now that we have the background of the law covered, let’s dive into what this means to us and how it can impact our food sources and supply chains.
How will this law make imported food safer?
New authorities under the Act include:
What is required to become a certified facility?
The time line is dated from the date of the enactment (January 2011). The following items are to be completed by the FDA no later than the corresponding times. (According to the law at this point in time.)
Tags: food safety, food safety and haccp, food safety and supply chains, food safety modernization act, fsma, haccp, haccp certification.