Chinese consumers are very concerned about the frequent negative news on the safety and quality of some baby and child products in China. According to a consumer survey commissioned by Chinese Trade Development Center on mainland baby and child products, over 90% of the respondents say they are always mindful of the reports on the safety of baby and child products and are increasingly concerned about product safety and quality. Parents tend to choose products made of natural materials to prevent their children from excessive exposure to chemicals. Some 90% of the respondents say they would buy “organic” and “eco-friendly” products for their children as far as possible.
“Baby Boom” Fuels Demand
China adopted “two-child policy” in January 2016 in a bid to promote balanced population growth and as a further step towards improving the country’s birth control policy. It followed the introduction in 2013 of the policy to let married couples have two children if either parent is an only child. The National Health and Family Planning Commission estimates that as a result, the average number of new births each year is likely to be between 17 million and 20 million from 2016 and 2020. The number of new births showed a marked increase in the first year of implementation of the “second-child policy”. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the number of new births increased from 16.55 million in 2015 to 17.86 million in 2016. China’s huge newborn population base figure and the number of additional new births is very likely to lead to a rise in the demand for baby and child products.
Increasing Concern for Product Safety and Quality
Product safety and quality problems in China such as “fake baby formula”, “shoddy lining” and “excess formaldehyde” have led to growing concern among parents for the safety and quality of baby and child products. The survey finds that 92% of the respondents agree with the statement “I am always mindful of publicity and reports on the safety of baby and child products”. This is particularly the case for respondents from Shanghai (96%), Beijing (94%) and Shenyang (94%). In addition, 91% of the respondents say they are “increasingly concerned with the safety and quality of baby and child products”.
This survey finds nearly three-quarters of respondents from Shanghai and Guangzhou agree that “baby and child products of foreign brands offer better varieties, more functions and styles than mainland brands”, proportions that are higher than those of other surveyed cities. This is probably because Shanghai and Guangzhou consumers are better informed about these brands than their counterparts elsewhere. 74% of the respondents from Shanghai are wary/doubtful of the safety and quality of mainland-manufactured baby and child products, representing the highest proportion among respondents in all cities polled. Shanghai consumers may also be more likely to actively look for overseas brands.
Preference for “Organic/Eco-friendly” and “Safety Certification”
Overall, 90% of the respondents say they would buy organic/eco-friendly products for their children as far as is possible. The percentage is highest in Wuhan (94%) and Changsha (94%) and lowest in Qingdao (76%). During the 2013 survey, only 87% of the respondents say they would buy organic/eco-friendly products for their children as far as is possible. Mainland parents have a growing preference for “organic” and “eco-friendly” baby and child products.
Parents would choose organic food for their children as long as is possible because of concerns that hormones in food may affect child growth, while they would buy organic cotton clothing for their children to avoid chemicals on the clothing that might trigger skin allergies.
In short, the parents of top-tier cities are very open to imported goods are willing to pay more for products with safety certification as their awareness of safety certification increases. They carefully read product labeling and want to see safety certification (compared with only 77% of parents willing to do so in the 2013 survey). The percentage willing to do so is significantly higher in Beijing (90%), Shanghai (89%) and Guangzhou (88%) than elsewhere.Israeli exporters are facing BDS in USA and Europe, but China and Asia is not influenced by such movement. If you would like to approach Chinese buyers directly, a direct marketing to China is needed. Grab the opportunity as the old saying goes, "When God closes a door, He opens the window".