In total, 134 health foods have managed to gain the ‘blue-hat’ status in the six months of this year, according to a new report by Hangzhou-based regulatory consultancy CIRS.
Of which, the topmost common health claim made by the approved products was ‘strengthening immunity’ – which was made by 51 products.
The second most common health claim was ‘reducing blood lipids’ made by 30 products, and ‘antioxidising’ made by nine products.
In China, the ‘blue-hat’ logo is printed on health foods that were successfully registered with the State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR).
In contrast to the alternative framework known as health food filing, health foods registration is a longer and more complex and expensive process.
They contain functional ingredients not listed in the Health Foods Raw Material Directory and once successfully registered, they could be sold offline and in domestic e-commerce channels.
Without a ‘blue-hat’ logo, most of the overseas health supplement products enter China via cross-border e-commerce. However, some firms such as Swisse have managed to gain access via the framework, while Chromadex is also seeking to break into omnichannel retail by undergoing this process.
The other popular health claims made were related to sleep-aid, alleviating eye fatigue, alleviating physical fatigue, and for improving bowel movement.
Who is leading the pack?
Out of the registrants, Chengdu-based company Nutryfarm (营养物（成都）生物医药有限公司) led the pack with five products successfully undergone the registration process.
Three of which were for strengthening the immune system, one product for alleviating fatigue, and one product for aiding the reduction of blood lipid. These products came in the form of tablets, capsules, and granules.
Sichuan Ke Lun Health Industry (四川科伦健康产业) took the second place with three approved products, while the rest of the registrants on the top 10 list managed to received registration approvals for two products.
Capsules remained the most common format in health foods that were successfully registered, with 40 out of the 134 new products made in this format.
Soft capsules, tablets, granules, and oral liquid took the remaining top five spots, with 35, 31, 10, and nine products successfully registered.
A total of 134 new products were successfully registered in the first six months of 2022.
Of which, 80 products had filed for registration last year, while the remaining 54 had filed for registration this year.
Analysis of the data found that the Chinese regulator has been focusing on granting approvals for products that had filed for registration last year in January and February this year, and only started to grant approvals for products that have filed for registration this year only from April.