Food nutrition labelling practice in China

Yexuan Tao, Ji Li, Y. Martin Lo, Qingya Tang, Youfa Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objective The present study aimed to scrutinize the food nutrition labelling practice in China before the Chinese Food Nutrition Labeling Regulation (CFNLR) era. Design Nutrition information of pre-packaged foods collected from a supermarket between December 2007 and January 2008 was analysed and compared with findings from a survey conducted in Beijing. Setting Information collected from a supermarket in Shanghai. Subjects A total of 850 pre-packaged foods. Results In the Shanghai survey, the overall labelling rate was 309 %, similar to that found in the Beijing study (297 %). While only 205 % of the snacks in Shanghai had nutrition labelling, the percentage of food items labelled with SFA (86 %), trans fatty acid (47 %) or fibre (121 %) was very low. Of those food items with nutrition labels, a considerable proportion (7-15 %) did not label energy, fat, carbohydrate or protein. Food products manufactured by Taiwan and Hong Kong companies had a lower labelling rate (136 %) than those manufactured by domestic (316 %) or international manufacturers (338 %).Conclusions The very low food nutrition labelling rate among products sold in large chain supermarkets in major cities of China before CFNLR emphasizes the need for such critical regulations to be implemented in order to reinforce industrial compliance with accurate nutrition labelling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)442-450
Number of pages9
JournalPublic health nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Food composition
  • Food nutrition label
  • Pre-packaged food

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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