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Standards and Regulations on Beverages in China

Beverage Standards Regulations
1. Definition of Beverages
General Standard for Beverage (GB/T 10789-2015): A beverage, that is, a drink, is a product that has been packaged in a quantitative manner for direct drinking or diluted or brewed by a certain proportion of water, and the content of ethanol (mass fraction) does not exceed 0.5%. It can also be a thick syrup or in the solid form. The beverage belongs to general food.

2. Classification of Beverages
According to General Standard for Beverage (GB/T 10789-2015), beverages are classified into 11 categories, namely, packaged drinking water, fruit/vegetable juices and beverages, protein beverages, carbonated beverages, beverages for special uses, flavoured beverages, tea beverages, coffee beverages, botanical beverages, solid beverages and other beverages.
3. Standards and Regulations on Beverages
  3.1 Standards of Beverages
    a. National Food Safety Standard Beverages (GB 7101-2015) (NOT applicable for packaged drinking water and natural mineral drinking water)
    b. National Food Safety Standard Packaged Drinking Water (GB 19298-2014)
    c. National Food Safety Standard Natural Mineral Drinking Water (GB 8537-2018)
  3.2 Hygienic Requirements for Production of Beverages
    a. National Food Safety Standard Hygienic Specification for Beverage Production (GB 12695-2016) (NOT applicable for packaged drinking water and made-on-site beverages)
    b. National Food Safety Standard Hygienic Specification for Packaged Drinking Water Production (GB 19304-2018)
    c. and, all the water used for production of beverages shall comply with Standards for Drinking Water Quality (GB 5749-2006)
  3.3 Hygienic Requirements for Production of Beverages
Detailed Rules for the Examination of Production License for Beverages (2017): producing 7 categories of beverages shall apply for production license, which are packaged drinking water, fruit/vegetable juices and beverages, protein beverages, carbonated beverages, tea beverages, solid beverages and other beverages.
4. Development of Standards and Regulations on Beverages
  4.1 Progress in the Revision of Standards
    a. In April, 2018, the National Standards Milk Beverages (Draft for comment) and Tea Beverages (Draft for comment) and Industry Standard Plant Protein Beverage Coconut Meat Juice and Reconstituted Coconut Meat Juice (Draft for comment) were issued.
    b. In May, 2018, Standards for Drinking Water Quality (GB 5749-2006) was planned for revision.
    c. In October, 2018, relevant national standards for testing methods of beverages and natural mineral drinking water were planned for revision.
  4.2 Development trend of Standards & Regulations on Beverages  
National Food Safety standard General Rules for Nutrition Labelling of Prepackaged Foods (GB 28050-xxxx) is now under internal solicitation in the industry, in which the requirements for labelling ‘sugar’ may will be mandatory in the nutrition label of pre-packaged foods. In the future, the authorities might formulate policies on imposing levies on sugar-containing beverages or reducing sugar content in beverages, for promoting the “healthy” “nutritional” transformation of beverage industry.













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