Home News Ag Economics Unofficial Facility Registration Websites: Warning for Ag Exporters

Unofficial Facility Registration Websites: Warning for Ag Exporters

The USDA Foreign Ag Service (FAS) has received inquiries about several websites that offer facility registration to export various food and agricultural products to the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Many of these websites, however, are not official PRC government websites. Exporters should register their facilities through official government websites or through a U.S. government agency.

The General Administration of Customs of the PRC (GACC) requires establishments exporting specific categories of food products to the PRC to register with either the Bureau of Import and Export Food Safey (BIEFS) or with the Department of Animal and Plant Quarantine (DAPQ). Depending on the product, businesses can either self-register or are required to work with a U.S. government agency to register. Those establishments self-registering with BIEFS will do so through the China Import Food Enterprises Registration (CIFER) system.

FAS has received inquiries about several websites or service providers that purportedly offer facility registration services. These websites disguise themselves as an official GACC website or as a website of the State General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ), an agency that no longer exists after merging to become GACC. These non-official websites attempt to lure overseas manufacturers to register their facilities to export their product to China in exchange for a fee. Several of these websites look legitimate, and contacts who have engaged these websites have shared that customer service representatives are responsive to inquiries. These websites will often have“GACC” or “CIFER” in the name, while others may reference “AQSIQ” in the name. Some of the websites mirror the layout of the official website and display official logos, which has misled exporters to believe the website is the official website for registering facilities in the PRC. In addition, these websites are usually the top results of internet searches making it even harder to determine that they are not legitimate. These websites, however, are not official PRC websites for facility registration and, GACC staff have shared that, when questioned, these spurious websites are not official.

The official GACC CIFER single window portal website address is https://cifer.singlewindow.cn. It is the only website to register products that fall under Decree 248 with BIEFS, while DAPQ facility registration must be done via a government agency.

BIEFS Registration

BIEFS requires establishments to register in the CIFER system prior to shipping products covered under Decree 248. Please see the latest USDA GAIN Report updating the list of products subject to Decree 248: Decree 248 Product List Update – May 2024 | CH2024-0064. Depending on the product, exporters can register their facilities through a self-registration process or will need the assistance of the U.S. competent authority. The attached spreadsheet in the report lists products covered by Decree 248 by HS code and indicates whether the facility can be self-registered or if it needs assistance from the U.S. competent authority.

NOTE: U.S. exporters of meat, poultry, dairy, infant formula, and seafood products should follow the procedures for exporting to the PRC as outlined by relevant U.S. food safety regulators: the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). For further assistance, FDA-regulated facilities may contact: cfsanexportcertification@fda.hhs.gov. mailto:FSIS-regulated facilities are encouraged to seek assistance from FSIS In-Plant Inspection Personnel at their establishments and can also send inquiries to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service’s AskFSIS mailbox at https://www.fsis.usda.gov/contact-us/askfsis.

DAPQ Registration

DAPQ requires exporters and traders whose commodities fall under DAPQ’s authority, such as grains and oilseeds under PRC Decree 177, pulses, fresh fruits and vegetables, pet foods, compound and mixed feed, feed ingredients and additives, live animals and genetics, and some aquatic products, to register via a government agency. Currently, USDA China offices, FAS and APHIS, manage or administer 43 lists transmitted to GACC DAPQ. These include lists compiled by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), the USDA AMS Federal Grain Inspection Service (FGIS), the Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and industry associations.

For general information regarding Decree 248, please contact: Decree248Inquiry@usda.gov. For general information regarding DAPQ’s registration process, please contact:

FASChinaDAPQRegistrations@usda.gov.

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