Product types from China can be imported with the prospect of good savings and quality. However, there are some types of items that you should avoid if possible. These items can often prove to be more difficult than they are worth.

Hazardous Substances from China

Objects such as oxidizing agents, compressed gases, poisons, radiation, caustic substances, flammable liquids, paints or potentially explosive materials are extremely difficult to import. Most are not allowed.
Items that are involved in or come into contact with these materials can also be fairly heavily regulated. They are heavily regulated by customs and shipping is a huge challenge. Some items require very special transportation, which in turn causes expensive shipping costs.

An example would be if we have dealt with the procurement of Covid test kits in the past. These kits must be shipped under special conditions and kept at very cold temperatures. This led to a sharp increase in shipping costs and was therefore not an option.

Liquids from China

Products with any type of liquid can be difficult to obtain. These products cannot be shipped by air, so shipments must be made by sea. Most, if not all, carriers require products that contain liquids of any kind to be shipped with FCL or full container loads. This means that if your shipment only takes ¼ of a freight container, you still have to pay for the entire space of the container. The reason for this is that if your product is leaking for any reason, it will not damage others’ products.

Getting liquids is also a challenge. Most factories in China are geared towards mass production. While a 55-gallon drum of your formula can fill hundreds of small containers for a product, a chemical plant that has to produce the 55-gallon liquid drum doesn’t bring much profit. If it’s a custom formula, they need to switch production methods to make the liquid, which takes time and money. Therefore, they want a larger volume order to offset the setup cost.

There are not many chemical factories in China that are FDA certified. If you are importing to the US, it must certainly be the case.

Weapons from China

Firearms are almost impossible to import from China. China has restricted most of the weapon parts for export. Most accessories such as holsters or bipeds can be imported. To find out whether a particular part is approved, contact your customs agent who can look it up.

Products That Export USA or Europe to China

Trying to import exported products doesn’t work for obvious reasons. One example is that top US exports to China such as soybeans, automotive and aerospace parts as well as electrical integrated circuits and semiconductors.

You can get machined or forged products for automotive and aerospace parts, but parts with advanced electrical components and systems are much more difficult to obtain from China.

Customs Broker

If you can avoid procuring these items, you will save yourself a lot of time and headaches. If you have any questions as to whether importing or exporting a product is legal, contact a customs agent. You can also contact us if you are looking for an offer for your product.