Introduction of new food products in China: Is there a trend towards healthier and safer products?

Montserrat Costa-Font*, Cesar Revoredo-Giha

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

The Chinese society has undergone an important transformation in the last 20 years, with changes in lifestyles due to increasing urbanization and rising income levels. The emergence of modern supermarkets, convenience stores, and hypermarkets has run alongside the changes in consumers’ lifestyles, revolutionizing the Chinese food system and the nature of its food supply. Changes in food consumption patterns have also accompanied these shifts. One of the distinguishing aspects of this modern food sector is the continuous introduction of new foods and beverages to the market, and the communication of their associated attributes through labels, in-store displays, and advertising. The purpose of this paper is to explore whether there have been any trends towards the introduction of products with greater health, nutrition, and food safety attributes to help consumers attain healthier diets making trade-offs between purchase options. Results show that there has been a rise in the number of new products in the Chinese food retail sector, particularly branded products introduced mainly by Chinese companies making food safety claims. It is clear, however, that the new food and drink products follow the consumption trends highlighted in the literature, and, therefore, there are low chances that they will positively influence the Chinese diet to an important degree, as they are mainly reinforcing the observed dietary trends.
Original languageEnglish
Article number51
JournalSocial Sciences
Volume8
Issue number2
Early online date13 Feb 2019
DOIs
Publication statusFirst published - 13 Feb 2019

Keywords

  • Food security
  • Food science

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