BLOG: Doing Business in China

China is one of Canada’s largest export markets for agri-food products which saw a 10% growth in 2020 versus the prior year. This growth is attributed to China re-opening its market early in 2020 after COVID, it’s large population base, the continued growth in its middle class with rising disposable income. Chinese consumers are also very sophisticated and enjoy sourcing products internationally.

For companies looking to do business in this market they need to be aware that it is diverse and complex with several regions and both domestic and import competition is fierce. To be successful the exporter must be committed to spending a lot of time and resources and should research the market prior to making any final market entry decisions.


  • Contact the CFEA – reach out to us ( or 416-445-3747) for advice.
  • Develop a Business Plan – create a business plan. Free template is available through BDC.
  • Research Market Opportunities – free market reports are available to CFEA members in the members only area.
  • Research Regulatory Aspects – free regulatory reports are available to CFEA members in the members only area.
  • Product Modifications – in addition to labeling and package modifications a full review of permitted ingredients should be undertaken both for legality and taste preferences.
  • Trademark Registration – protecting your brand is essential. Learn how at Government of Canada.
  • Contact the Trade Commissioner Service –TCS can recommend partners and provide guidance. Contact info at this link.
  • Market Visit – it is important to visit the market (when travel advisories are removed) to meet potential contacts, perform in market research and to attend trade shows and missions. CFEA organizes participation at SIAL China, ProWine China and China Food and Drink Fair. Keep an eye on our calendar of events for invite postings.


Sources: Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada; USDA.