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China's Smithfield Buyer Faces Problems as Health Concerns Arise

China's Smithfield Buyer Faces Problems as Health Concerns Arise


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Multiple issues are coming up after news that Shuanghui International plans to purchase pork giant Smithfield

Here's another reason to be slightly freaking out that Chinese company Shuanghui International is planning to buy pork giant Smithfield: Shuanghui, naturally, has a terrible history of food hazards.

CNN has an roundup of some horrifying food scares from Shuanghui in China, ranging from dead maggots found in sausages to bacteria-ridden cumin sausages. And while the company's statement claims that "All consumers in the United States can continue to enjoy the high quality of safe pork products from Smithfield," concerns over food safety and the food supply are still rampant.

The New York Times reports that the Smithfield-Shuanghui deal will be subject to a national security review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, as it's the largest Chinese acquistition of an American company.

The review, The Times reports, will likley look at the contracts Smithfield has with military and security agencies, as well as special technology that might be transferred abroad. Furthermore, the review will see if Shuanghui, post acquisition, will be able to distrup the U.S. food supply chain.

Naturally, some politicans are wary of the acquisition, given Shuanghui's sketchy past. "We know that Chinese food products have been a threat to public health and that Shuanghui was found to have produced and sold tainted pork," U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro said in a statement (DeLauro helped draft the 2011 Food Safety Modernization Act). "This merger... may only make it more difficult to protect the food supply. I have deep doubts about whether this merger best serves American consumers and urge federal regulators to put their concerns first."

Considering that recently, 16,000 dead pigs were shown in the Huangpu River, it's not surprising that there's low PR for this buy. Then again, our recent salmonella and listeria scares aren't that great, either.


Starboard Concedes on Smithfield's Takeover by Chinese Pork Producer

Activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP all but abandoned its effort to block Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd.'s $4.7 billion acquisition of Smithfield Foods Inc., smoothing the way for shareholder approval of the landmark deal next week.

Starboard has been working since June to scotch the union of the two meat companies, which would be the biggest Chinese takeover of a U.S. company. Starboard announced that month that it had taken a 5.7% stake in Virginia-based Smithfield, the world's largest pork producer.

But on Friday it said now plans to vote in favor of the deal at a special meeting scheduled for Sept. 24 "unless another proposal emerges." In a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Starboard attributed the about-face to a number of issues, including the challenges of coming up with a formal counter offer in time for the meeting.

Shuanghui agreed in May to buy Smithfield for $34 a share, a 31% premium to the price at the time. Some lawmakers and others have criticized the deal over questions of food safety, concerns Smithfield and Shuanghui have rebutted.


Americans on Cusp of Meat Shortage With Food Chain Breaking Down

The coronavirus pandemic is pushing the food supply chain to its limits.

Plant shutdowns are leaving Americans dangerously close to seeing meat shortages at grocery stores. Meanwhile, farmers are facing the likely culling of millions of animals and mass burial graves could soon be dug across the heartland.

“The food supply chain is breaking,” said John Tyson, chairman of Tyson Foods Inc., the biggest U.S. meat company.

Outbreaks are forcing the closure of some of the country’s biggest slaughterhouses, where tens of thousands of animals are processed daily. As the plants shutter, producers are left with nowhere to sell their livestock. It’s forcing farmers to make gut-wrenching decisions to dispose of their animals. The situation is so severe that the U.S. government is setting up a center partly to assist on �population and disposal methods.”

“Millions of pounds of meat will disappear” as plants close, Tyson said in a blog post on the company’s website. “In addition to meat shortages, this is a serious food waste issue. Farmers across the nation simply will not have anywhere to sell their livestock to be processed, when they could have fed the nation. Millions of animals – chickens, pigs and cattle – will be depopulated.”

His comments echoed warnings from Smithfield Foods Inc., the world’s No. 1 pork producer, and JBS SA, the biggest global meat company, that consumers are likely to see meat shortfalls.

Almost a third of U.S. pork capacity is down, and JBS said Sunday it will shutter another beef production facility in Wisconsin. Brazil, the world’s No. 1 shipper of chicken and beef, saw its first major closure with the halt of a poultry plant, and key operations are also down in Canada, the latest being a British Columbia poultry plant.

While hundreds of plants in the Americas are still running, the staggering acceleration of supply disruptions is alarming. Taken together, the U.S., Brazil and Canada account for about 65% of world meat trade.

“It’s absolutely unprecedented,” said Brett Stuart, president of Denver-based consulting firm Global AgriTrends. “It’s a lose-lose situation where we have producers at the risk of losing everything and consumers at the risk of paying higher prices. Restaurants in a week could be out of fresh ground beef.”

Meat prices are surging on the supply disruptions. U.S. wholesale beef has surged to a record, and wholesale pork soared almost 30% last week.

Jersey Mike’s Franchise Systems Inc., which has 1,750 stores across the U.S., is working with its ham supplier Clemens Food Group to ensure its supply of pork, something they sell quite a bit of in their sub sandwiches.

“We’re backing it up already because of the coming -- we feel -- the coming shortages,” said Peter Cancro, chief executive officer.

To be sure, some plants have restarted after testing workers and improving conditions, and most Brazilian facilities are still operating. Another point to consider: There haven’t yet been big shutdowns in Europe. The European Union accounts for about a fifth of global meat exports, U.S. government data show.

It should be noted that the output from a plant where infection pops up doesn’t pose health concerns because by all accounts Covid-19 isn’t a food-borne illness. Products from a farm or a production plant with a confirmed case can still be sent out for distribution.

But a production halt means that there’s no new supplies.

And these shutdowns are happening at a time when global meat supplies were already tight. China, the world’s top hog producer, has been battling an outbreak of African swine fever, which destroyed millions of the country’s pigs. Plus the virus is hitting production after some meat companies had already taken steps to slow output because of the closure of restaurants around the world.

Inventories can provide some cushion, though they may not last long.

Total American meat supplies in cold-storage facilities are equal to roughly two weeks of production. With most plant shutdowns lasting about 14 days for safety reasons, that further underscores the potential for deficits.

Meat Plant Closures

U.S. processing plants shuttered due to the pandemic

Meanwhile, plants are also facing a labor crunch as employees fall ill. It’s been reported that a large chicken-processing company was forced to kill 2 million of its birds earlier this month because of worker shortages.

Some North American hog producers are also disposing of their animals. A farmer in eastern Canada eastern culled fully grown animals that were ready for the slaughterhouse while a Manitoba producer is looking to euthanize 3,000 piglets this week, said Rick Bergmann, chair of the Canadian Pork Council. The situation is even more challenging in the U.S. amid a significant wave of shutdowns, and “our hearts go out to our American neighbors that are going through such a deep, dark time,” he said.

“It’s a horrific topic,” Bergmann said in an interview with Bloomberg TV. “It’s something that we just don’t want to do and we just don’t know how else to deal with this because of the processing-plant challenge.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced it will establish a 𠇌oordination center” to help livestock and poultry producers hurt by plant closures.

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service will offer 𠇍irect support to producers whose animals cannot move to market” and work with state veterinarians and other public officials “to help identify potential alternative markets” as plant shutdowns increase, according to a release posted on the agency’s website.

It’s hard to say exactly why the virus is spreading so fast among meat-plant employees. Some analysts have cited the fact that these are usually low-paying jobs that are often filled by immigrants and migrants. That means workers can live in cramped quarters, with sometimes more than one family sharing the same dwelling -- so if one person gets sick, the disease can spread quickly.

Employees are also in close proximity on the job, with the work on some processing lines being described as 𠇎lbow-to-elbow.” Even if line speeds are slowed, workers spread out and shifts are staggered, there’s still the chance of mingling in break rooms, hallways and shared transportation to often far-flung sites. These plants see thousands of people coming in and out every day -- it’s basically the opposite of social distancing.

At the same time, U.S. federal employees responsible for inspecting meat plants are falling ill. More than 100 inspection-service employees have tested positive for Covid-19, the government confirmed. At least two deaths of inspectors have been reported.

U.S. inspectors travel among facilities. That’s adding to fears that shutdowns will keep occurring if a sick federal employee brings the infection to plants where there’s not yet an outbreak.

𠇍uring this pandemic, our entire industry is faced with an impossible choice: continue to operate to sustain our nation’s food supply or shutter in an attempt to entirely insulate our employees from risk,” Smithfield said in a statement Friday. “It’s an awful choice it’s not one we wish on anyone.”

— With assistance by Isis Almeida, Tatiana Freitas, Jordan Yadoo, Lydia Mulvany, Leslie Patton, Deena Shanker, and Shery Ahn


As U.S. meat workers fall sick and supplies dwindle, exports to China soar

CHICAGO (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump ordered meat processing plants to stay open to protect the nation's food supply even as workers got sick and died. Yet the plants have increasingly been exporting to China while U.S. consumers face shortages, a Reuters analysis of government data showed.

Trump, who is in an acrimonious public dispute with Beijing over its handling of the coronavirus outbreak, invoked the 1950 Defense Production Act on April 28 to keep plants open. Now he is facing criticism from some lawmakers, consumers and plant employees for putting workers at risk in part to help ensure China's meat supply.

Meat buyers in China ramped up imports from around the world as a pig disease decimated its herd, the world's largest, and pushed Chinese pork prices to record highs. The supply shock drove China to pay more for U.S. meat than other countries, and even U.S. consumers, since late 2019.

"We know that over time exports are critically important. I think we need to focus on meeting domestic demand at this point," said Mike Naig, the agriculture secretary in the top U.S. pork-producing state of Iowa who supported Trump's order.

Processors including Smithfield Foods, owned by China's WH Group Ltd, Brazilian-owned JBS USA and Tyson Foods Inc temporarily closed about 20 U.S. meat plants as the virus infected thousands of employees, prompting meatpackers and grocers to warn of shortages. Some plants have resumed limited operations as workers afraid of getting sick stay home.

The disruptions mean consumers could see 30% less meat in supermarkets by the end of May, at prices 20% higher than last year, according to Will Sawyer, lead economist at agricultural lender CoBank.

While pork supplies tightened as the number of pigs slaughtered each day plunged by about 40% since mid-March, shipments of American pork to China more than quadrupled over the same period, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data. https://tmsnrt.rs/2YLF1XN

Smithfield, which China's WH Group bought for $4.7 billion in 2013, was the biggest U.S. exporter to China from January to March, according to Panjiva, a division of S&P Global Market Intelligence. Smithfield shipped at least 13,680 tonnes by sea in March, Panjiva said, citing its most recent data.

Smithfield, the world's biggest pork processor, said in April that U.S. plant closures were pushing retailers "perilously close to the edge" on supplies.

The company is now retooling its namesake pork plant in Smithfield, Virginia, to supply fresh pork, bacon and ham to more U.S. consumers, according to a statement. The move is an about-face after the company reconfigured the plant last year to process hog carcasses for the Chinese market, employees, local officials and industry sources told Reuters.

The Virginia facility currently serves export markets like China and domestic customers, according to Smithfield. Most U.S. pork processors routinely export products to more than 40 international markets, company spokeswoman Keira Lombardo said.

The virus infected about 850 employees at another Smithfield pork plant in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Across the U.S. industry, about 5,000 infections and 20 deaths occurred, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"That tragic outcome is all the worse when the food being processed is not going to our nation's families," said U.S. Representative Rosa DeLauro, a Democrat from Connecticut. "That is what the Defense Production Act is all about: protecting America's national interests, not China's."

Pork processor Fresh Mark resumed making bacon and ham for global customers at a Salem, Ohio, plant it shut in April over coronavirus cases.

"If we start having a shortage in America, I think it should stay here," said Bruce Fatherly, a maintenance worker at the plant and member of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union.

Fresh Mark said exports are a small part of its business.

The supply concerns could not have been foreseen when Trump signed a deal in January to ease a trade war he started with Beijing two years earlier. China promised to increase purchases of U.S. farm goods by at least $12.5 billion in 2020 and $19.5 billion in 2021, over the 2017 level of $24 billion.

The White House declined to comment. The USDA and U.S. Trade Representative's office did not respond to requests for comment.

China increased its purchases because of its dire need for protein after the pig disease African swine fever led to the death of half the country's herd over the past two years. Beijing lifted a nearly five-year ban on U.S. chicken imports in November and also waived retaliatory tariffs on meat shipments to help boost supplies.

Year-to-date, about 31% of U.S. pork has been exported, totaling about 838,000 tonnes, according to the U.S. Meat Export Federation. One-third of that volume went to China, accounting for more than 10% of total first-quarter production, the industry group said. It added that exports help increase U.S. production by raising overall demand.

Carcasses, which include most of the pig, were the top product shipped to China in January and February, according to USDA. Loads also include feet and organs that many Americans do not eat.

Exports to China set a record for the period from January to March, and shipments to all destinations in March set a record for any month, according to USDA.

JBS, which produces pork, beef and chicken, told Reuters it reduced exports to focus on meeting U.S. demand during the pandemic. About 280 employees at a JBS beef plant in Greeley, Colorado, have been infected with the virus, and seven died, union officials said.

"I think we need to take care of our country and our needs first," said Kim Cordova, president of the local United Food and Commercial Workers International Union that represents plant employees.

Tyson Foods President Dean Banks said on a conference call last week that he expects China's demand for U.S. pork to remain strong as it recovers from a COVID-19 lockdown.

Suppliers like Tyson have limited meat products for American retailers because of plant closures. Kroger Co and Costco Wholesale Corp, meanwhile, restricted shoppers' meat purchases.

U.S. farmers, who struggled financially during the trade war with Beijing, say they still need importing countries, including China, to buy their pork. Prior the pandemic, they grappled with an oversupply of hogs.

"There's enough meat for all channels if we could get these plants back up and rolling," said Brian Duncan, a hog farmer and vice president of the Illinois Farm Bureau.

(Additional reporting by Karl Plume in Chicago and Dominique Patton in Beijing editing by Caroline Stauffer and Edward Tobin)

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Naiveté About CFIUS' National Security Policy Towards Foreign Investment In The U.S.

It’s hardly a secret that enterprises based in large emerging markets are clamoring to invest directly in U.S. companies—as well as in companies based in other advanced countries with hospitable economic environments—particularly through the acquisition of existing businesses. Foreign direct investment (FDI)—the ownership or control by a foreign entity of 10 percent or more of a domestic enterprise—plays a modest but growing role in the U.S. economy. Problem is that an increasing number of these foreign investors are from nations where there is significant involvement in business decisions by governments whose agendas are perceived—indeed known—to go way beyond commercial objectives. China, while hardly alone in not having effective separation between government and business, including in its FDI pursuits in the U.S., epitomizes the case.

The understandable response by the U.S.—and like-minded states—is to intensify its scrutiny of the national security risks such inbound transactions might pose domestically, particularly in sectors that even the most advanced of countries consider ‘sensitive’. And some of the industries that used to not be considered ‘sensitive’ have begun to be treated so as it becomes more apparent that there is involvement of a foreign government with nefarious objectives that owns or controls the entity pursuing the investment.

While having an internal decision-making process that is a bit more opaque than comparator countries utilize, the U.S. policy framework for making these national security assessments, The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)—pronounced “syfius”—has existed since 1975. Despite the updating of its mandates in light of the profound transformation that has occurred in the tenor of the external political economy risks to which the U.S. is exposed, including terrorist threats—not to mention changes in the stance of our own political climate—CFIUS, which is an interagency body, does in fact have a well-spelled out set of procedures.

CFIUS is empowered to ‘review’ acquisitions of U.S. businesses by foreign persons—termed ‘covered transactions’—to evaluate whether foreign control of such businesses will have an adverse impact on U.S. national security. Importantly, CFIUS filings can be made on a voluntary basis by parties to a transaction in order have the committee's assessment as early as possible so as to avoid unanticipated roadblocks. Since time is of the essence in most transactions, filings by the parties have grown increasingly routine. In fact, most wise foreign buyers actually insist on filing even when there is no obvious potential national security impact. Indeed, it is now common practice before a bona fide filing is made with CFIUS to actually ‘pre-file’. This helps parties to a transaction ascertain when a review of a official filing will be deemed ‘complete’ by CFIUS.

When no national security risks are judged to exist by CFIUS’s review, a transaction will be cleared within 30 days if a further assessment of these risks is needed, the committee can open up an ‘investigation’, which can last for an additional 45 days. If a ‘covered transaction’ is not cleared by the committee, CFIUS has the authority to unwind the transaction or impose mitigation measures on the foreign buyer if it deems there is a threat posed to the country’s national security. If the committee is unable to resolve these issues and the parties to the transaction do not agree to cease proceeding, the President has 15 days to prohibit the consummation of the deal.

With full disclosure, I sat on CFIUS during my time in the White House—years ago. (My doing so brought on frequent jokes from friends every time I would mention ‘CFIUS’, asking me, when they heard its pronunciation, if I was taking penicillin.) Occupying that position surely has given me a well-trained eye subsequently observing from the outside both how the CFIUS process has evolved and how it appears to operate today (with of course my not being privy to any inside knowledge of the body’s workings and deliberations whatsoever).

Notwithstanding my own experience, it should be abundantly clear to any observer of CFIUS’ public track record over all these years, that like other countries’ inbound investment decision-making calculus, the organization hardly operates in a domestic political vacuum. It may—though not always—be subject to various political pressures both within the Executive Branch as well as from Capitol Hill.

While one might wish that not to be the case, that is the universal reality. This make all the more surprising the sometimes-sheer naiveté of potential foreign investors pursuing deals in the U.S.—not to mention that of the advisors inside the U.S. from which they seek counsel—about how to proactively structure a strategy to deal with the CFIUS process.

The truth is that every economy in the world has a policy regime specifying in varying degrees the regulation of inflows of FDI.

In statutory terms, the restrictiveness of U.S. regulation of FDI is about average for the 62 countries routinely assessed by the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)—the group of the world’s wealthiest countries. (The OECD’s assessment includes all of its 35-member countries, all the G20 countries, and a number of other countries that are less wealthy.) Moreover, as a matter of practice, there are exemptions granted by the U.S. from these formal regulations, particularly at the state level, which makes the regime more liberal.

That CFIUS decisions blocking or demanding the restructuring of inbound transactions—which are actually few in number—may be subject to political pressures, sometimes based on quite spurious reasons, as politicians the world over are wont to do, overall, U.S. regulatory constraints on inbound FDI are rather benign.

The most compelling proof of this are official data that the U.S. is the world’s largest recipient of FDI flows in absolute terms, and it has been so ever since 2006 (except for the brief 2010-2014 period, when comparable inflows to China were slightly larger). Some professional services firms like to cite their surveys of foreign business executives’ perceptions of the U.S. investment climate and aspirations for prospective transactions here—for which the U.S. is often ranked highest in the world—as evidence of the country’s hospitable environment. While such findings may be heart-warming, these measures are not data-driven. Their economic meaningfulness is not robust nor can they be used to make systematic cross-country comparisons. Perception indices are ‘old-school’. In a nutshell, they do not reflect investment decisions actually undertaken, which really is the only meaningful basis on which a country’s FDI policy stance can be assessed and on which policy reforms should be formulated.

Some readers will be surprised to learn that today, U.S. inflows of FDI are the highest in the world, believing that China surely would have been a larger recipient. In 2016, China’s inflows of FDI were US$171 billion, while those of the U.S. were US$468 billion, about 2¾ times greater. It is true that China does take in a huge amount of foreign direct investment it’s of course the largest nation in the world. Taking into account the relative sizes of countries would thus make sense in making such judgments. On this basis, FDI inflows in 2016 for China were US$97 per capita for the U.S. they were US$1,193 per capita. That's a big difference.

It is also the case that annual flows of FDI for any country can fluctuate greatly, especially for a year when one-time, large foreign acquisitions of domestic firms take place. For these reasons, cross-country comparisons are best made on the basis of cumulative inflows—or the ‘stock’—of FDI. In this context, as of year-end 2016, the stock of FDI per capita in the U.S. was US$19,491 in China it was just $980.

Why do I say CFIUS cases are few in number? Because, the federal government actually reviews only a small fraction of the hundreds of proposed foreign acquisitions each year. In 2016, the latest year for which data exist, a total of 172 notices were filed for ‘review’ with CFIUS compared to 155 notices submitted in 2008.

Since parties can voluntarily file with CFIUS, they also have the right to unilaterally withdraw from proceeding with their proposed deals due to any national security concerns signaled by CFIUS during the initial 30-day review period.

The share of such withdrawals has not changed much: in 2016, 19% of the review filings were voluntarily withdrawn by the parties due to such ‘upstream’ signals in 2015 the comparable figure was 23%, and in 2014 it was 17%. While these withdrawals are strictly speaking voluntary, of course they do reflect self-selection incentives parties to a transaction face to not proceed toward consummation of deals based on the signals transmitted by CFIUS, a dynamic deliberately built into the CFIUS screening process.

Although there has been a sizeable increase in the number of CFIUS filings that have progressed to the subsequent formal ‘investigation’ phase, 46% of the filings in 2016 versus 6% in 2006, the fraction of such transactions that were subject to mitigation measures required by CFIUS has not grown substantially in recent years—8% in 2015 compared to 6% in 2014--the only two recent years for which CFIUS has disclosed such data.

Over the life of CFIUS, Presidential decisions to block acquisitions have occurred only in a few instances: most notably in 1990, when President George H. W. Bush blocked the sale of Seattle-based Mamco to a Chinese state-owned aviation enterprise in 2012, when President Barrack Obama mandated the divestiture of wind farms in Oregon by the Chinese-owned Ralls Company in 2016, when President Obama prohibited the takeover by a Chinese state-owned firm of a U.S.-based subsidiary of Germany’s Aixtron, a semiconductor manufacturer whose products have military applications and in September 2017, when President Trump banned China’s Canyon Bridge Capital Partners from acquiring Lattice Semiconductor.

The politicization of the CFIUS process has been most evident when the U.S. legislative branch has gotten involved in the scrutiny of foreign acquisitions of U.S. business. This is because the present-day authority undergirding CFIUS’ decision-making process derives from laws enacted by the U.S. Congress. Specifically, the Omnibus Trade Act of 1988 incorporated the so-called ‘Exon-Florio Amendment’ to the Defense Production Act of 1950, which enshrined CFIUS’ erstwhile administrative functions in to law—an action spurred on by the attempt of Japan’s Fujitsu to acquire Fairchild Semiconductor in 1987. (Subsequent legislative changes have also been made.)

Two cases illustrate this point quite clearly. One is Capitol Hill’s vehement opposition in 2006 to the acquisition by the UAE’s Dubai Ports World of several major U.S. port operations. The transaction already had been consummated following the approval of both CFIUS and President George W. Bush. In the face of legislative action by the Congress, Dubai Ports World faced little choice but to sell its newly acquired assets in the U.S. to U.S. third parties.

The other case was the 2013 sale of the pork products company Smithfield Foods to the Chinese firm Shuanghui. It was the largest Chinese purchase of a U.S. company in history. As CFIUS was in the throes of its process of deciding whether or not to approve the sale, the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, in an unprecedented move, held hearings on the threat the proposed transaction would pose to the safety of the U.S. food supply chain.

It was truly a poignant moment in the politicization of the CFIUS process—for two reasons, both of which have powerful lessons moving forward. First, the acquisition had little, if anything, to do with China’s interest in sales of pork within the U.S. market rather Shuanghui’s objective was to actually increase U.S. exports of pork to China, which it has subsequently done. Second, Smithfield Foods and its U.S. advisors had blinders on as to their fundamental understanding of the perceived political ramifications of the deal as seen through the eyes of U.S. politicians—whether or not such perceptions were rational. They were stunned that a deal combining the elements “China” and “U.S. food” would even merit voluntary notification to CFIUS. Given all that has transpired in the political realm of Chinese investment in the U.S. over the past couple of decades, to say they were naïve would be an understatement.

Given the continuing prominent influence, whether explicit or implicit, by the state in the affairs of its largest enterprises—those who are obviously most prone to invest overseas—China’s attempts to make acquisitions in U.S. sectors where Washington believes the country’s national security is at risk, will continue to face significant hurdles. Indeed, because of Beijing’s significant maintenance of control in the nation’s businesses, coupled with the growing threat of cyber-attacks emanating from China, industries in the U.S. that might not have received the same degree of scrutiny by CFIUS in previous years are now squarely in the cross-hairs.

In this context, the U.S. financial and high technology sectors are front and center. For better or worse it then really should have not been much of a surprise to the Chinese—or their U.S. advisors—that CFIUS blocked the acquisition by Alibaba’s affiliate, Ant Financial, of MoneyGram in January 2018. Against this backdrop, China’s Oceanside might well be prepared for disappointment in its attempt to acquire the Virginia-based insurance company Genworth and so should Singapore-based Broadcom in its bid for Qualcomm.

Mind you, the objective here is not to defend the politicization of the CFIUS process. It is far simpler: to ignore it would be folly.

** UPDATE AS OF AUGUST 13, 2018 **

Subsequent to the publication of this column on February 28, 2018, CFIUS in fact blocked Broadcom's bid for Qualcomm. I make note of this because it is rare that my predictions are so accurate.


5. Workout challenge

Exercise is an important part of any healthy lifestyle. But with busy schedules and balancing family needs with hobbies and work, it can be hard to find time to hit the gym. Make sure you give employees the time they need to exercise, even if that means offering a more flexible schedule. You can also offer subsidized fitness passes or invite personal trainers and coaches to the office to create workouts for employees.

Ask employees to create their own personal goals related to cardiovascular health, flexibility, strength training, or overall wellness. Inviting them to choose their own goals—and rewards—can create a sense of ownership. And rather than creating a culture of competition, make it a “buddy system”: link up those team members with similar personal goals, and invite them to challenge and support each other every step of the way.


Thai Netizens Are Selling Cicaks Online After Market Price Rises Up To RM39 Per Kg!

Follow us on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest stories and updates daily.

Next time you see a lizard on your house wall, you know what to do!

Our initial reaction when we see a lizard on the wall is to yell and look for cover but unbeknownst to us, we could’ve actually been millionaires. Thailand is known to be the sale central for many quirky products including underground eggs like those from red ants. The latest to join the trend is geckos!

According to China Press, Thai netizens have been advertising on Facebook that they’re willing to pay 300 baht (RM39) for one kg and up to 300,000 baht (RM39,442) for one tonne of geckos!

When a Thai gecko buyer was contacted, the 35-year-old man named Lentivanon said he hails from a poor family and his family only has one motorcycle. After working overseas for ten years, he wanted to find a job in his hometown but kept hitting a wall. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, the situation became worse.

When talking to his Indonesian friend, he suggested that Lentivanon catch and dry geckos before importing them to China. His friend also sent over a dryer specifically used to dry geckos.

Since then, his business has flourished and he set up a Facebook page where the price for alive geckos and dried geckos differ accordingly. The response to his ads has been overwhelming and Thai netizens have been rushing to sell the geckos.

After purchasing and drying the geckos, Lentivanon then sells them to a local boss who hails from China. The geckos will then be exported to the Chinese markets to be made into medicine.

Well, during the pandemic, you’ve got to find any ways to get that bread right? Would be considering selling geckos around your house for some cash? Let us know in the comments section!


Marketing Strategy for Food Brands in China

China&rsquos economy is flourishing, the growth of China is probably one of the best stories of the time. Companies that build a detailed digital marketing strategy and focus on the evolving trends and further address these trends and learn how consumption is driven by new shopping behaviors, preferences, and habits will be forerunners in a market worth trillions of dollars.

Marketing to Distributors

China is a completely different market than elsewhere in the world. If foreign brands can not find quality distributors then it gets difficult to gain return on investment. Local Chinese distributors are very picky in Chinese market and they also maintain a reputation therefore firstly, to get noticed by them and get chosen by them is close to impossible if a brand doesn&rsquot already have created awareness on Chinese digital platforms and portrays a good e- reputation.

E-reputation of French Wine: Chateau Fourcas Dupre

Forcus Dupre, was highly welcomed wine in China. The local Chinese digital marketing agency, knowing the Chinese consumer mind, entailed the story of this French wine in such a way that it made its way to the tables of upper-class Chinese consumers in a short span of time. This wine was recommended by a British writer Jancis Robinson, who specializes in the wine industry and she is known as the queen of England wine industry as consultant. Due to extremely good E-reputation, the wine was soon rated as best on Chinese retailers websites. E-reputation is extremely important in China to promote a foreign brand or a product.

Social media: the key to engaging with potential Clients

Chinese netizens follow social media platforms religiously. A big part of their spending on a product is dependent on reviews they read from other users. Chinese consumers do not trust in advertising of the products from the company itself. It is critical for companies to have social media presence to be successful in the Chinese digital ecosystem. Social media presence can backfire too, if not taken care of properly, therefore it is vital to partner with a reputable digital agency in China for guidance on social media presence.

Branding is the Key in China

No matter how popular a brand is outside China, but to Chinese audience only what is visible on Chinese digital platform is known. In B2B lead generation, more trust and visibility is needed.

In China, consumers look for new and trustworthy Food and Beverages brands. Firstly, consumers must be told about the benefits of the product, and the Intellectual property rights must be availed, in order to protect one brand from counterfeit products. Several well-known brands want to convey friendly messages to attract Chinese consumers but sometimes end up offending Chinese consumers due to lack of knowledge about Chinese culture. Therefore, It is extremely important to understand local culture in China and conduct branding accordingly.

Brand activation

The secret to brand activation in China is when a company is promoting their products or services they must focus on similar communities or one kind of consumer. Brand activation is a process of making a brand well-known among the consumers and eventually focuses on moving the consumers to move them to the next phase of the buyer&rsquos cycle. The activation can be promoted in an experience-based way. This generates consumer&rsquos interest, and allow them to use and experience the brand. Social media platforms are highly advisable to create brand activation in China.

Brand Exposure

Brand exposure or brand awareness is the familiarity of the consumer with the brand. In China, brand exposure is done using social media website, such as WeChat, Weibo and QQ. Chinese consumers learn about new brands via social media. According to most international food brands, Chinese consumers do research about a product or service on their smartphones.

Twist&drink Campaign

Twist & Drink is an Austrian brand catering children. The drink is made from natural mountain spring water. The product line boasts several fruity flavors, in colorful easy to open bottles. Twist & Drink is a family owned business since 1973 and produces over 50 million bottles each year. Currently, the brand is available in more than 20 countries.

Twist & Drink on Wechat

Wechat is the most adopted social media platform by brands to engage consumers. It has over 860 million monthly active users. With the help of local digital marketing agency, Twist & Drink launched a game, consisting of various characters that users needed to compete with in order to collect points in the &lsquoTwist & Drink arena&rsquo. WeChat games are extremely popular and work as a great marketing tool if branded appropriately. Twist & Drink game informed the consumers about the different flavors with the help of characters in the game. Each character also came with key messages displayed before and after the game was played. More than 10000 Chinese consumers participated per day, using their WeChat accounts. On the other hand, regular posts and content were shared on other major social media platforms every day.

The official Twist & Drink account was made using H5 using Wechat mini-site which was hosted within the application.

Positioning of Twist & Drink Digital marketing strategy

In order to attract Chinese customers, the product or service must be extensively visible on digital platforms of China. Like all other foreign brands no matter how famous a brand is in some part of the world when rolling inChina, the brand needs to create awareness for the targeted market. Along with functional benefits, Chinese consumers are extremely focused on the value of products and services. They require companies to justify their prices. On the other hand, E-commerce has become more prevalent as the buying channel in China, food companies must create a platform that seamlessly integrates online and offline elements. At every step of the purchasing pathway, digital interaction needs to be integrated and design meaningful touch points that deepen the brands engage with consumers. In Twist & Drink case, awareness was created among mothers using digital channels, highlighting the health benefits as the selling point of the drink for their children.

Canadian Citadel Maple Syrup Digital Strategy

Citadelle, is the world&rsquos largest supplier of 100 percent pure maple syrup. Previously, Chinese consumers found maple syrup just too expensive to include in their diet. Citadelle realized the opportunity in the Chinese market and felt that Chinese consumers are looking for healthy and safe food, especially imported food, and when it comes to sweeteners, maple syrup is the healthiest option. Citadelle also targeted babies under 12 months of age, a key demographic of China. Maple syrup is safe for babies under 12 months old whereas, honey is not advisable for babies. Maple syrup also has 25 percent fewer calories than honey. These selling points coupled with a well-known brand name soon became popular among Chinese consumers on Tmall e-commerce site.

To encourage customer engagement Citadel also conducted cooking contests and made Chinese recipes using maple syrups.

Epermarket- Shanghai Online Supermarket

Jean Yves LU is the founder and CEO of Epermarket, Shanghai&rsquos ultimate online supermarket. Jean Yves LU saw the potential in catering to the expat community of Shanghai. He aimed to offer Epermarket as one stop that sells foreign products and the food that foreign community in China can trust. Epermarket also has high-class wine to satisfy even the most refined foreign and local Chinese customers, which has been handpicked from more than five thousand wineries around the world. However, Epermarket soon realized the interest of local Chinese community in fresh, safe imported products. Initially, they were targeting foreign consumers and expats in Shanghai, soon after realizing the local Chinese consumers demand they laid their digital strategy to attract Chinese urbanites. This gave boom in their sales by targeting several segments in the market.

Brand Building is Vital in China

China has become one of the fastest growing lucrative markets in the world. Chinese consumers are opening to foreign brands even faster than expected especially for food and beverages brands due to &lsquosafe food&rsquo feature attached to it. There is a huge potential for growth for foreign brands in China. E-commerce is a vital part of consumer shopping behavior in China. Therefore, the online Chinese population has exceeded 731 million people, which is equal to the total population of Europe. Online shopping has become an important factor in China&rsquos economy, contributing highly to annual GDP growth. The trend in digital shopping in various industries is growing rapidly and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

To gain success in Chinese marketplaces a brand must be known by Chinese customers. Products and services must be offered to cater Chines preferences an tastes. This can call for innovating new product assortment or could be altering brand name or logo. Chinese consumers are extremely reliant on social media for learning about new brands and products. Online forums where product reviews are shared also count a lot in brand building.

Lifestyle around the Product: it is not just Food

With increased awareness, Chinese consumers preferences and habits are changing. On the other hand Chinese use particular brands and products as self-expression. Through urbanization, modernization and internationalization, Chinese consumers are adopting at an extremely fast rate, and now they have developed an appetite and tastes for foreign products and cuisines too. Initially, when Starbucks rolled out in China, its customers were mostly expats but now Starbucks is extremely popular among Chinese consumers. Starbucks positioned coffee drinking as an experience, and a symbol of an upwardly mobile lifestyle, this trend was readily welcomed by young Chinese consumers as it made them feel more independent and allowed them to appear cool and successful among their peers.

Engaging more consumers: Chinese loves taking Pictures of their meal

In the highly connected environment of China, customer engagement must be the top priority in the food industry. Chinese customers like online interactions and it can be achieved with the help of interactive apps and games. Netizens seek personal experience in an app, that could be encouraged with one-to-one dialogue or contextual engagement. A successful mobile strategy should also draw actionable data in order to understand the customers perspective and intentions. Apart from mobile applications customers can be engaged on Chinese social media, where Chinese consumers are very active and responding to each and every post is considered as an obligation. Although handling social media engagement in China is not easy, one negative comment can flare up into a bad image, therefore companies need to develop new models and processes for effectively engaging individuals in a way that communicates brand identity and values along with keeping customer preferences in mind. Responses on social media must satisfy consumer concerns, and should not lead to a negative viral spiral. Customer engagement on social media in China has the power to make or break a brand.

Retargeting: Multiplicate the Contact with Brand

The marketing campaign must target customers on various social media platforms. Creating awareness of the brand, interacting online with customers and creating a seamless transition between each social media platform. Chinese digital ecosystem is fragmented. However, the major platforms like Weibo, WeChat, Baidu and Taobao boast the largest volume of users. Platforms are either segmented by function or cater to niche interest communities.

Engage more 0ffline 2 0nline: Food needs visual Engagement

China is becoming increasingly digital. Foreign companies especially food brands need to incorporate online and offline features in their business model. A strategy that enables food and beverage brands to avail full advantages of both online commerce and physical retail.

The French Cellar, a top winery in Asia, derived a purposeful Online to Offline strategy to enable Chinese customers to subscribe to their organized offline events in major cities of China. In the events, Chinese consumers could taste the wine and this strategy was also meaningful in connecting existing customers to potential customers

This online to offline strategy was implemented with the help of Wechat, where The French Cellar engaged with the customers present at the event on their WeChat account. The attendees were educated regarding wine and step by step discovered the wide selection of The French Cellar. In this course, the brand also encouraged customers to taste the wine. Wine is not part of Chinese culture, but with internationalization, Chinese consumers have become increasingly drawn towards wine and want to learn about its various characteristics and how to appreciate a good wine.

Discovering Brand&rsquos Charisma

When entering the Chinese market brand has to be extra careful of the local Chinese consumer&rsquos values, traditions, and preferences. A market entry must not feel like attacking current customs or replacing their values. Therefore, in-depth market research in highly advisable to learn about the Chinese market.

Starbucks: not coffee but the aura

When Starbucks entered China a tea-drinking nation, it didn&rsquot focus on replacing tea but enhanced tea culture by bringing about drinks that contained tea ingredients. Starbucks gave consumers the option of drinking and hanging out in a Third place. The main target of Starbucks was China&rsquos middle-class consumers who are inspired by western culture and quite fast at adopting it. Starbucks created an environment that recharges the customer by providing upbeat music and chic interiors. Many Chinese consumers go to Starbucks not just to have a cup of Frappuccino, but to enjoy the &ldquoStarbucks Experience&rdquo that makes them feel cool and trendy. Thus, Starbucks has established itself as an aspirational brand and is able to charge premium prices.

On Starbucks Chinese Website www.starbucks.com.cn

Tracking Customer Actions

In order to stay ahead of the competition, in China retailers must invest in identifying customer needs, preferences along with finding the right partners and investing beyond O2O into omnichannel fulfillment. E-commerce has enabled international retailers and brands to enter China more quickly and easily than before through online-only business models. Today, China is driven by mobile-consumer behavior, vibrant social commerce adoption, and a ubiquitous digital payments infrastructure. On the other hand, the Chinese market is fiercely competitive. Internet giants and international, local brands are investing hugely to learn about customer actions in order to provide exceptional customer experience. It won&rsquot be wrong to say that only the most innovative will survive in this dynamic retail environment.

Identify Best Products

As the digital platform shared between eCommerce, mobile, and social have created so much noise, at times it gets difficult to identify the best products. Therefore brands are integrating online and offline shopping experiences to fully satisfy a customer before they make a purchase. In this way, digital becomes a platform for not just online growth but everything from, brand building and customer engagement through to supply chain operations and physical store formats.

Influencers Guide

Influencers are another strong way of branding products in 2020. Retailers look for influencers that are relatable to their brand values. This way a target market is already in place. Customers already trust the influencer and their recommendations. According to a report by PWC, 29% of Chinese consumers, as compared to 13% globally, use social media to see what brands or products KOLs and celebrities are endorsing. KOLs differ from E-commerce merchant in three ways, they interactively interact with consumers, raise awareness and help build brands.

For Example Miss Yeah produce very funny video, she cooks in her office

Maximize Communication Channel

With immense E-commerce penetration of about 5%, now(FMCG) and groceries sector could be the next major growth driver. Even though online grocery has been a challenging proposition for retailers globally, but in China, it is offering an attractive opportunity. China&rsquos luxury consumers are much more willing to access and buy brands online, takes advantage of promotions, and have concerns over authenticity. Therefore, brands must communicate and interact with customers on communication channels as much as they can. This strategy increases trust in the brand and also educates customers about the product or brand.

Develop Distribution

A recent survey conducted by PwC shows that 40% of Chinese consumers shop from the favorite retailer. Consumers trust the brand offered by that particular retailer with respect to product quality and price. This attribute is highly prevalent in the grocery and food categories. Safety and quality issues have given international supermarkets and brands offering imported products an edge in the Chinese food market. High demand for imported food items has encouraged the development of cross-border E-commerce. Cross-border E-commerce enables retailers and brands to try the Chinese market entry model without the compulsion of setting up a physical store, or a local Chinese entity, or any enormous capital investment.

Many retailers consider cross-border E-commerce as a &ldquotest and learn&rdquo strategy.

We know how to develop the distribution, and contact you need. (contact us)

Engage with more Distribution Dealers

In the case of cross-border and E-commerce market entry, retailers must engage with and partner with as many local distributors as possible. Since this strategy will make more possibilities to be successful in Chinese online platforms. The vita way to increase exposure is lead generation. Inbound marketing offers extremely useful options to be applied in lead generation, a few to name are Content development, SEO, PPC, and E-reputation. In B2B lead generation, more trust and visibility are needed. Firstly, branding and consumer awareness of the food brand needs to be comprehensive with respect to its content, high-quality photos, and consumer insight. A foreign brand must have a local Chinese customer-oriented website along with other useful features on social media.

New platforms exist in China and help Brands to connect with a large number of distributors.

How to Hack the Distribution in China?

We have a new solution, a Break to Market, B2D Platforms (Brands to Distributors). Old Unique Distributor that run the all distribution for Brand will die soon. And I think these new Solutions will be the future of the Distribution in China.

We have a PPT that explains these new solutions, I can send it to Professionals. Send us an email to get it.

Engagement with Distributors

In China, dealing with distributors can be a ruthless experience sometimes. Due to high demand, Chinese distributors look for brands that are popular in consumers or have features that Chinese consumers prefer. Distributors, don&rsquot help in promoting your product on their website in fact if a brand is not doing well they will leave it and opt for a similar featured brand. Therefore, digital marketing strategy needs to be extremely important to survive the highly competitive market of China.

Brands need to make their own space on digital platforms by being sensitive to the needs of customers, regularly coming up with interactive digital activities on social media and promoting one&rsquos brand as the best among all other brands present in the market.

To Have high engagement of Distributors, Branding is the Key

  • Good Branding = easier to Sell = Good Engagement of your Chinese Distributor, and the network of resellers
  • Poor Branding = Hard to Sell = No engagement of your Distributor

I invite you to read this article to understand. Problems of New Brands in China

Franchise Development

In China, the franchisee undertakes business operations under a uniform business model as a part of agreement by the contract and pays franchising fees to the franchisor. International Chinese tourism has developed the demand for foreign food brands and restaurants in China. Chinese consumers are becoming more aware of western tastes and have started to appreciate foreign cuisines. Foreign restaurants and food brands wants to materialize this opportunity and open their franchise in China.

Foreign brands of eateries need to embrace the digital opportunities in order to find a suitable franchisee. They need to focus on building their own digital capabilities and to defend their ground by activating the online channel. Companies need to design their business functions with a full-channel vision to win the future Chinese shoppers who are becoming increasingly sophisticated and multichannel.

The Key to Develop a Franchise: A Strong Branding

E-Commerce : new Channel of Distribution for F&B Brands in China

E-commerce is continuously developing showing strong growth momentum in China. It has penetrated extensively in higher and lower-tier cities. They need to focus on building their own digital capabilities and to defend their ground by activating the online channel. Companies need to design their business functions with a full-channel vision to win the future Chinese shoppers who are becoming increasingly sophisticated and multichannel.

Maximize Traffic

There are three main search engines in China. Baidu is the biggest and most well-known, is used the most with boasting 70% of the market share. It is also the fifth most visited website in the world in terms of online traffic. To gain more traffic and gain, a brand can establish itself on Qihoo 360 and Sogou. SEM is another good option to attract traffic to a website, although it requires a bigger marketing budget. Pay Per Click strategy is more effective for bigger brands and requires a substantial budget. SEM is often used by companies looking for extra leads.

Optimize conversion rate: the E-Reputation Theory

To encourage conversion rate, brands that optimize their websites on Baidu also need to have a mobile site. This also generates mobile payments and an easier way for a brand to reach conversions. Baidu is also enhancing the user experience on mobile phones. An optimized website is extremely important for a successful SEM strategy, this calls for rich content Mandarin website. Having a .cn domain increases the creditability of the website and improves ranking on the Chinese web. Informative Chinese websites hold an excellent reputation in China and help consumers to trust the brand.

Best First Step Entry Strategy in China: Cross border E-Commerce

Cross boarder market entry in China comes with a whole different set of toolkit where integrated marketing on digital and offline platform is the key. Its not easy to grab attention of customers who are spoiled in the digital world, daily bombarded with extensive quality content, used to paying conveniently in cashless environment and follows trustworthy KOL advice. Although, connecting seamlessly with Chinese urban netizens need a carefully sketched digital marketing strategy to uplift the products and services from the crowd. It is true for companies pursuing to enter the Chinese market digitally, is also cost-effective rather than taking the offline door. Especially when the brand is unknown in the Chinese environment, since digital is the only platform that can be used to draw the attention of Chinese consumers.

Do, Learn, adapt and Optimize: a Successful Philosophy in China Digital Economy

The digital strategy for China is completely different than the rest of the world. It is extremely important to learn the taste preferences, values and traditions of Chinese consumers before offering them a product. Since offering them something that they cannot relate to is useless as the product will never be able to get their information.

Secondly, all previous brands that have entered Chinese brands have improvised their products according to Chinese taste, let it be Green tea Frapachino at Starbucks or Oreo cookies to Red bean drinks. After, adapting to Chinese tastes and preferences, companies must optimize their marketing strategy according to the trend in China. Which is ultimately digital. Creating product awareness, interacting with customers on social media, using KOL for the product, providing with interactive online to offline solutions and providing high-quality mandarin content this all comes under the umbrella of the Cross-border digital marketing strategy of China.

Innovative Strategy For Leading brands

Until a few years ago co-branding in China of leading brands was a new concept and companies were not sure of what reaction they will receive from the Chinese market. On Thanksgiving 2017, Durex taking advantage of Chinese consumer&rsquos increasing awareness of foreign festivals, Durex China&rsquos Weibo account published &ldquothank you&rdquo posts to 13 brands in seemingly unrelated fields. Further attention came when, the 13 &ldquochosen brands&rdquo felt obliged to welcome or thank Durex back for something else, which left netizens glued to their Weibo accounts to see the interaction among the brands. The humorous responses among the brands gained extensive appreciation from the Chinese consumers and lead to be shared 16,000 times and received 4,200 comments.

CoBranding -Starbucks Alibaba

Starbucks, the coffee giant opened &ldquoThe Starbucks Reserve Roastery&rdquo in Shanghai, thats boasts a 30,000 square-foot retail location that the company refers to as the &ldquofirst fully immersive coffee wonderland in China&rdquo and it is also the most ambitious project of Starbucks ever.


The Roastery incorporates the first-ever in-store augmented reality experience, built in partnership with Chinese tech giant Alibaba.

Consumers use a custom Roastery smartphone app, to learn about various features of The Roastery. The app entails a digital menu and rewards customers with virtual badges. Alibaba has provided its e-commerce giant, Tmall services by selling Roastery-branded merchandise and coffee, and Roastery tasting experiences.

Starbucks realizing the power of the digital ecosystem in China previously partnered with one more digital Chinese tech giant, Tencent, for social gifting integration on WeChat.

In China Starbucks witnesses the fastest-growing market with more than 3,000 stores across 136 cities, and 600 alone in Shanghai. The company opened one store every 15 hours in China, where there are nearly 700 million smartphone users.

In last July, Schultz gave clues on partnering with Chinese tech companies, &ldquobased on the fact that the consumer in China is well more advanced than the U.S. consumer in terms of being a digital native&rdquo, Schultz.

Author

Fatima RIZVI: an international Marketer that spends several years in China. Fatima has a great understanding of Marketer Problems in China, and Deep understanding of the Chinese Food market.

Olivier VEROT: founder of GMA, Olivier is a &ldquopragmatic&rdquo Marketer that prioritizes Results. After spending 11 years in China, he has good expertise in Chinese Marketing.

GMA a Marketing Agency Specialized in Food & Beverage Market in China

Performance Marketing Agency: the core DNA of our Agency is to bring Results to our clients. We work to optimize Sales. develop Branding, or increase Exposure.

Food Expertise: we have expertise in Market Food & beverage in China, know the best Channels, best influencers and understand the communication among the Chinese Middle Class.

Digital Attitude: as a pure Digital Player, we perform with Digital Marketing Campaign and have the Digital Philosophy to Do , learn , Adapt and Optimize. We believe that perfect Results arrive by analyze and non stop Optimize.

Return on Investment: We know that China is a difficult Market for new Brands and we are obsessed with delivering Results that bring ROI to our clients. We provide cost Effective solutions to Maximize Results. It is when we make money that our clients make money.

Partner: we have a partnership approach with our clients. We Guide them, give feedback about Campaigns, and like to work in smart partnerships.

Our Case studies in F&B in China.

Send us an email to receive them.

If you have a serious project in China and want to develop your Brand, your distribution, your E-Commerce feel be Free to contact us.


Is There an Alternative to Taking Borax?

Some will be uncomfortable with taking any amount of borax internally. Taking a boron supplement will, in many cases, achieve a similar result.

Continue on to read the hundreds of posts that have been sent into Earth Clinic since 2002 regarding the health benefits of borax. Our reader feedback section on borax is extensive and not to be missed!

Related Links:

Abdominal Pain, Bloating

3 User Reviews

I too have found a huge, albeit unexpected, improvement in my gut since taking borax powder (This didn't happen whenI was taking borax supplements in tablet form). Pretty much since the day I ran out of the tablets and used 'cleaning' borax (pure with no additives) I have noticed this effect. I told my mother about it as she too has had major gut issues that have caused her serious pain for over 20 years. She has been diagnosed with IBS and told basically that she has to live with it. She too has have next to no issues since taking borax powder (1 tsp dissolved in 1 l of water, then add 1 tsp of this liquid to a glass of water to drink every day, sometimes 2x a day.)

Do you drink sometimes 2 liters per day? or 2 glasses of water per day? Thank you

Prioris, Bill, Ted, and TimH..etc: Thank you all so much for your informative posts on borax. They have explained my mild die-off reaction (herxheimer effect) from using it. I shall cut back a bit on the intake and continue on.

For the record, my apparent die-off reaction consists only of morning diarrhea.

The apparent positive effects that I have noticed recently have been that my chronic abdominal bloating has all but completely disappeared (I've literally had that for decades). Along with the bloating, general abdominal pain and discomfort have also all but disappeared, which included daily, middle-of-the-night deep burning pain in my gut.

Please note, that along with starting the borax regime, I have also started the “water cure” (Google it), which involves properly hydrating your body. These two remedies have removed a dark cloud of dismal depression that many digestive-related issues have caused me for many years. It feels like I have a new life. Cheers and blessing to all!!

Can I just take Boron Capsules?

Things are dose dependent. All of the Boron supplements I find are rather low like less than or equal to about 10mg. 1/4 teaspoon per day though dissolved in water is between 115mg-158mg depending on the measuring spoon and how level or round your scoop is. That is a huge delta in dose. I have heard of 50mg-60mg tablets but have never actually seen them for sale.

In the late 1980's and early 1990's as a high school athlete the ones sold to athletes where 3mg-6mg - again far lower than what you get in a rather common dose of 1/4 teaspoon of borax in 1 liter of water sipped through the day!

I took 1/4 teaspoon per day the first 3 weeks then started to get diarrhea. I reduced it to 1/8 of a teaspoon a day for 2 weeks and all of the diarrhea went away completely. Some days I take 1/8 teaspoon some days I take a 1/4 and I am fine.

In theory anything is better than not taking borax so if someone was really sensitive or had IBS you could start at 1/16th of a teaspoon and slowly over weeks and months build up to 1/4 teaspoon. Evidence is showing that observational with individuals that you can get a lot of health benefits at varying does but the higher the dose the more consistent the results seem to be.

In post menopausal women a lot of individuals have found that reversing osteoporosis takes around 150mg of borax, vit and 400mg-600mg of magnesium per day to reverse it and that is a far higher dose than someone without osteoporosis needs. In those without severe fluorosis or osteoporosis that have healthy bone mass, 50mg per day seems to be the sweet spot but again you need magnesium and vitamin D3 in the diet. It is thought that enzymes and mineral metabolism is how boron works it's many benefits. Some people probably get enough minerals in their diet but for most Americans minerals and Vitamin D3 and iodine are almost always low. Iodine helps to keep your body from depositing fluoride in your bones.

Please edit your comment. It currently says "(1 tsp dissolved in 1 l of water, ", but there is something missing, ie cup, gallon?

EC : One teaspoon dissolved in one liter of water.

I believe 1 l should be 1 L or better yet, 1 liter. A liter is a fractional bit over a quart in volume.

". 150mg of borax, vit and 400mg-600mg of magnesium per day" "vit"? Do you mean Vitamin D3 or what? New information shouldn't involve guessing.

I read thru comments. It's “funny “ how many people can't educate themselves thru their own observations and symptoms. Of course, school medicine isn't helping either. To many doctors are 30-40 years behind todays knowledge. What is Borax? It's simple question. Detergent. It dissolve fats. Clean dirty fat from things. What are most dangerous toxins in human body? Don't ask doctors. Fat soluble. If you are lucky, you are going to store them in fat tissues. If not, organs and arteries. Liver is working hardest from 11 pm till 3 am. If you woke up and have heartburn, or can not get back to sleep, thats liver recycling old stored toxic fats. Ooops. I forget that I am not “ medicine man”. Take fiber and binders to stop recycling of toxins and lower Herxeimer reaction. Toxins are really corrosive, especially heavy metals( positiv charged/ different story). Turpentine? Solvent. MCT C8? Solvent. When Herxing, don't take fish, krill oil, Vitamin D, sardines.

lol . No. It's not detergent. Like so many others. You forgot to read the second word on the box. BOOSTER. It's helps clean. It clearly says it is not detergent. Besides, it's just salt dude.

It is a detergent, my grandmother used it in our launder in the 50's and 60's else why would she use salt to wash clothes?

Borax is anti-bacterial and anti fungal which is the reason it's so good to add to a laundry..It also chelates heavy metals from your body-another reason it's so good for arthritis etc. etc.

Can you elaborate more on the corrosive toxins and solvents relation?

And why not take D3, omega3, etc while herxing?

Arthritis, Bad Breath

1 User Review

I had pain in my knees and fingers. I started using this mix and its only been one week and my knees don't ache going up the stairs. I will continue for a while longer. My daughter had a foul breath and the second day after taking the mix she has no bad breath.

Did you mix the Borax with something else and rub it on your knees or mix it with something and take it by mouth? Please clarify bc my knees are bothering me now that the weather be changing. Also, does your daughter have to take the mix every single day to keep the bad breath away? Thank you

Arthritis, Herpes

1 User Review

Better But With Side Effects

I started taking borax 2 months ago. For arthritis in my knee which exploded skiing. I also developed the most painful disease known: CRPS. This was 2 1/2 years ago. At that time I also found out I had herpes. After taking borax for only 24 hours I was able to walk 3 miles. Herpes outbreaks stopped.

BIG problem is side effects. Gut side effects. I sure don't want to quit borax, but am concerned about the gut pain. Can anyone tell me what happens in the gut to cause this pain?

I'm glad to hear that borax has helped your arthritis, herpes and CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome)!

I have gotten stomach pain after taking borax, but this is mainly because I have drank too much at one time on an empty stomach. If I drink it as Ted suggests by sipping the liter bottle throughout the day, then I have no stomach problems. I also don't start sipping until after I have eaten breakfast which helps avoid the empty stomach issue.

You don't say what dose of borax you are taking or how you are taking it. Ted's recommended dose for women is 1/8th of a teaspoon in a liter of water sipped throughout the day or basically a slow release rate which would be less likely to cause stomach upset or other adverse events.

If you are already taking it per his recommendations and are still having stomach pain, perhaps you can try lessening your dose.

The fact that you say you got relief in 24 hours of your first dose suggests that you may be able to get by with a significantly lesser dose than whatever you are currently taking. The majority of people testing borax have mentioned results in time periods of days, weeks or months so a matter of just hours is very fast and perhaps you are very sensitive to borax and could possibly get by with significantly less. For example, let's say that you are taking Ted's recommended dose for women of 1/8th teaspoon dissolved in a liter of water, try cutting that down by half, to 1/16th teaspoon in a liter of water. If you don't have a 1/16th teaspoon to measure with, just take your normal one liter mix containing 1/8th teaspoon of borax and divide it in half by pouring half of your liter bottle into another one liter bottle. You should now have two one liter bottles with a half liter each. Top these two bottles off with purified water and you now have a two day supply of half of Ted's recommended dose for women or 1/16th teaspoon per liter.

Kate, please keep us posted on how your experiment with borax goes so that others here can learn from your experience.

I wonder if the stomach pain could be because Borax is alkaline it might decrease your stomach acid and lead to indigestion when you eat?? Purely speculative. Inversely, taking an alkaline solution on an empty stomach can stimulate release of additional acid (in anticipation that you are eating) - this excess stomach acid with no food to digest could cause stomach pain as well.

Borax is a strong anti-oxidant or positive ion. It will attack and break double bonds in chemical compounds by causing the electrons to draw to it. Double bonds allow electrons to circulation between multiple carbon atoms so the positive ion can draw electrons from a few atoms away. It has a preference for large chemical compounds. By and large our bodies don't use large compounds (Vitamin K2 is an immediate exception I think of as I say this). So this anti-oxidant is effective in removing chemistry we don't want.

if you you have an ulcer there is a weak spot in the stomach lining. Borax will attack the tissue there and cause pain.

Try drinking more of a diluted solution. This is what happens in the blood stream. If you have an ulcer, that needs to be healed first. I have written an ebook that explains this and more. It is better written and more complete than I can write on the fly on a blog. Amazon kindle, The Healthy Truth by John Taylor.

Athlete's Foot

1 User Review

After trying everything else you could buy at the store for his pretty much life long athletes foot problem - and not having results my boyfriend finally decided to try the remedy I kept telling him to try. borax - which he thought was poison him instantly but he 'trusted' the OTC stuff at the store. LOL

He wet his feet and then took a handful and rubbed it all over his feet.

He said they stopped itching immediately! He was stunned.

A few weeks later I asked him how his athletes foot was and he said: oh wow! It hasn't come back! That stuff totally cured it.

Now he tells all his friends about borax )

I would like to know - after rubbing his feet with Borax how long did he let it stay on or if he let it dry without washing off?

Autoimmune Disease

6 User Reviews
Posted by Boroan Health My Hashimodo (8020 Graz) on 08/16/2020

Ich hatte seit 2 Jahren Hashimodo zuletzt meinen verschwundenen Arzt. Er war Spezialist auf diesem Gebiet. Aber eine normale google.com-Suche mit Bor und meinem Hashimodo ist weg. Ich habe vom letzten August 2019 bis heute 1/4 Teespoon und 759 mg Magnezium genommen und meine 2 3cm Calcium Promts sind weg. Wow, ich werde es meinen Freunden sagen, aber sie sind so dumm und werden nicht gesund. Tschüss

Google Translation:

The last time I had Hashimodo for two years was my missing doctor. He was a specialist in this field. But a normal google.com search with Bor and my Hashimodo is gone. I have taken 1/4 Teespoon and 759 mg Magnezium from last August 2019 until today and my 2 3cm Calcium. Promts are gone. Wow, I'll tell my friends, but they are so stupid and won't get well. Bye

EC : We think the poster means:

1/4 teaspoon borax solution in water, 759 mg of magnesium, and low dosage calcium supplements for Hashimoto's.

I took 1/8 tsp of Borax with a liter of mineral water 5 days a week for 5 months for help with my Sjogrens. After 5 months, I didn't notice any improvement at all. Could the problem be that I used mineral water?? I see you stated that it should be either distilled or clean water w/o minerals. I was going to start again (after resting a few months) but with 1/4 tsp this time. The Sjogrens has me down to about 94 pounds because it is going after my digestive system. I was up to 97 pounds before starting the Borax -- but went down to 94 after I was on it. Maybe because I wasn't eating nuts? Anyway, before I start again, I want to ask about the mineral water and if that could have been the reason I got no results after 5 months. Thank you.

I have scleroderma. My hands were sore, stiff and swelling. Getting digital ulcers every couple of mths. The borax protocol seem to help the symptoms plus was feeling better in general. I also take colloidal silver msm in green juice, water kefir, probiotics, colostrum plus some other supplements and essential oils. Autoimmune disease is epidemic and yet you hear very little about it. It effects each person individually. Drs just want to give us drugs to suppress the symptoms instead of attacking the root cause of the disease and seems like the research doesn't do anything to prevent the disease. It all starts with leaky gut syndrome. When we can't absorb essential nutrients then our bodies cannot fight off invaders or heal itself. Most AI patients are deficient in Vit. D3, boron and K2. If the body does not have theses essential components then you develop disease such as cancer or AI. They say 1 in 200 people have these diseases and most do not know it. So bringing awareness to people is critical to getting a cure and methods of prevention.

I find the Borax is effective. So when someone worries about the "safety" of the this I always tell them the drugs that are prescribed for my illness are far more "dangerous" than this. LOL.

I agree the drugs I was taking for rheumatoid arthritis almost destroyed my mind.

I was taking Leflunomide 20 MG and Prednisone, this combination was a nightmare for me. Now I drink Borax and also drink Marshmallow root tea and I feel so much better my fingers are no longer swollen and the stiffness in my shoulders has improved after only 1 week.

Thank God for people like Earthclinic and guest that are willing to post what works for them. We cannot or rather should not be so trusting towards the medical doctors. We see the doctor 15 minutes a visit every 2-3 months, and putting our lives in their hands, very big mistake. (No one get rich off me) Stop going to these doctors that are keeping you barely alive. Medical Standard of care is a guide used to treat a sickness or disease, not to cure it. Thus, keeping patients coming back, thus feeding our Giant Pharma, and insurance, and guess who runs that?

I am responsible for my life. I know my symptoms, I should learn the cure, and here it is, right in the palm of our hands, Earthclinic.com, all you want to know. What more can we ask for.

"Health care is a trillion-dollar industry in America, but are we getting what we pay for?

Rosenthal's new book, An American Sickness, Examines the deeply rooted problems of the exsting health care system and also offers suggestions for a way forward. She notes that under the current sysem, it's far more lucrative to provide a life time of treatment than a cure."

For your infomation, there is parasite epidemic in America. We go to doctors who DO NOT HELP. We have to self-treat with herbs, animal dewormers and other vitamins and treatments. Parasites are major cause of many stomach problems, Chrons, IBS, leaky gut, etc. FB groups are exploding exponentially.

I was experiencing a horrible auto immune condition called HS (Hidradenitis Supperativa). Very, very painful and debilitating. I decided to try the borax protocol to attack the autoimmune condition. In six weeks all symptoms of my condition had disappeared and it is 10 months later and I continue to be healed. I now drink borax water once or twice a week. I drink 1/4 tsp in the liter of distilled water once or twice a week. I give 1/4 of the above mentioned dilution to both my children once or twice a week. My Mom has been drinking it daily for 9 months (after seeing my amazing results) due to a number of health afflictions, and has skin growing on her legs where she has had open wounds for 30 years from a recluse spider bite. My coworker drinks the above mentioned dilution daily and has had a significant reduction in her rheumatoid arthritis pain. In fact over the winter she was shocked to 'notice' she was barely hurting in her hands at all. I was desperate for answers when I tried this and I'm so glad I did. Decide for yourself, trust your instincts. Good luck.

I started drinking 1/8 tsp to a liter/quart of water today.

I have autoimmune issues, including low thyroid, and the past 2 years have been fighting with rosacea which seems to be caused by mites. Mites increase when the body is stressed and immune system down.

Anyway, as weird as it is to say I'm drinking laundry detergent :), 20 mule team Borax from the laundry aisle for $4.97 is what I am using.

I created a paste of borax and hydrogen peroxide in my hand and used it on my face.

Better But With Side Effects

My face cleared up by day 4. I washed my wash with about a tsp of borax at night and have been drinking 1/8 tsp in a liter of water through the day (4 days on, 3 days off).

Day 6, I guess I experienced what they call "DIE OFF". Felt very ill. Had 3 instances within 90 minutes where I became nauseous, very warm very fast, rapid heat rate and profuse sweating (within a 10-15 period), where I had to seek shade and dump water all over me. I even came close to needing to lie flat on my back but was able to recover. I went home after the 3rd time.

Today is Day 11. Still tired and not much appetite, achy all last night. Tomorrow I will cycle off Borax again.

Did you recover? What have you gathered from it? I will do every other day.

How is your experience going with taking borax? Did you keep going after feeling so sick? I am wanting to try taking this.

Borax should be taken with a Magnesium supplement of 400-600mg per day. This helps the effectiveness, as well as minimizing the side-effects.

Please check out a full article on The Borax Conspiracy & dosage by Dr. Newnham who discovered its healing properties at site below (scroll down till you see actual article) : http://educate-yourself.org/cn/boraxconspiracy03jul12.shtml

I would like to know if the Hidradenitis has continued to be in remission since taking the Borax. Thanks for your feedback.

Your dosage information is incorrect. I teaspoon of borax powder, dissolved in 1 litre of water is the correct measure for making the concentrate. Then, 1 teaspoon of the concentrate will give you 3 mg of boron. This can be added to (up to 3 teaspoons a day) if there are no negative symptoms from the 1 teaspoon. The 1/8 teaspoon of borax is added to 1 litre of water and that is consumed in it's entirety during the day. These are NOT to be taken together - it's either one method or the other.

Ted's and Walter Last's protocols are just so different from the amount you take..not even close. hate that. LOL

Do you know what KIND of water is needed for the Borax remedy? Should it be distilled or just regular water and NOT mineral water (since I received no results using mineral water)? Thank you.

I guess I'm going to have to wait until Ted can come back. God bless his soul. His help was amazing.

Diane, I take borax with sea-salted bottled spring water. I also ensure to sup Magnesium. Maybe borax just didn't work for you, or there are other things going on in your body that it was working on. Most people are deficient in iodine, perhaps this (lugols iodine) or kelp extract will make a difference in your health. Just a thought. Since improving my reproductive cycle with a pot of fresh garden tea every day (the goal was better health through easily absorbed nutrients, this was unexpected and very welcome), I am supplementing vitamin e, Magnesium, coconut oil, vitamin c and have just really started Iodine properly after receiving the tablets. I will be starting high dose iodine after reading some benefits, this is the adjustment phase and fortunately with clean diet I have had no ill effects, started 1/4 pill, 1/2 pill now one pill daily. On my next few days off work I will trial 50 mg a day, initially for monitoring purposes. From high dose Iodine I expect cysts, lumps, stones and worse to dissolve, to not feel cold all the time, and for the disappearance of many moles, which from my understanding are a result of internal fungus. My best advice to you is to keep reading, researching, you are sure to find what your body needs to heal. Oh also add some herbs to assist the liver, an overloaded liver can not cleanse your body of the toxins that accumulate whenever pathogens, fungus etc are attacked. This (dandelion) is in my daily tea. Best to you.

Elaine, how much pink salt to a gallon of water?

I diagnosed with Lupus, except for plaquenil, my body reacts badly with other meds: methotrexate, Mycophenolate mofetil, Azathioprine,

Can I use boron to ease my joint pain and hair loss? What kind of borax I should take? Tina

I'm not Elaine, but I would love to give you an answer. I have been drinking distilled water 15+ years. You must add the mineral sea salt such as “Real Salt” or my preference, “Celtic Sea Salt”. I was told not to use Real Salt or Himalayan pink salt due to mercury toxicity has been found in much of the Himalayan pink salt.

I will be changing my drinking water to some really, really special water. Most folks have not heard, but please check it out Google—John Ellis Water.

Remember, your healing is in your mind and in your hands.

for Lupus you can use also with Borax

Peroxide hydrogen 35% food grade diluted

Itching and psychological effects, both, always put me in mind of parasites - which can be horrific little buggers.

I think that, for most people, particularly those who are not accustomed to natural remedies or have not done some "cleansing", a vitamin C regimen might be a better starting place. And I mean, BEFORE one ever even starts borax. Nothing else, just vitamin C. No "decorating" with other remedies.

I would not start with a mega dose. Maybe just 1000 - 2500 mg every other day. kill some off on one day and let the body flush out the toxic little parasite corpses the next. Then hit them again. After 3 or 4 doses (a week to 10 days), they'll be too busy looking for a place to hide to do much reproducing at which point their numbers will fall more rapidly without increasing the die-off rate due to the interrupted reproduction cycle with a steady, every other day dose of vitamin C.


4.0 Conclusion

In the end of the assignment, we have learned on how to identify the problems and causes which faced by the Hui Lau Shan through the marketing mix strategies that included product, price, place and promotion. Furthermore, we also learned on how to justify the problem causes in order to find out any suitable alternatives and recommendations, which contain any threats, opportunities, weaknesses and strengths of the company to implement it.

Besides that, we also learned the importance of a company to do their market analysis to internal and external situation. These included the company and the competitors marketing strategies, customer preferences and current market trend.

In future, the challenges that Hui Lau Shan might face is more competitors entering into this industry as the market of healthy food is keep on growing. In other words, there is still an opportunity for Hui Lau Shan to sustain in this industry but it has to face the threat to invest more in marketing strategy in order to retain and acquire the customer from other competitors.


Watch the video: Εγκρίθηκε το πρώτο εμβόλιο DNA κατά του κορωνοϊού: Ξεκινά η χορήγησή του στους Ινδούς (October 2022).