Fosterage of Kimchi Industry in Korea to Reaffirm its Sovereignty over Kimchi

Hyung-Jun Kang, Byoung-Hoon Lee

Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (MAFRA) plans to establish the status of Korea as the birthplace of kimchi by enhancing the competitiveness of domestically produced kimchi through several promotion strategies and fostering plans. The previous promotion strategies have included the following measures. First, the ministry will expand the base of kimchi and fostering related industries. MAFRA will industrialize pickled Chinese cabbage as a kimchi related industry and reinforce safety management of the kimchi. Second, MAFRA plans to strengthen the quality competitiveness of Korean kimchi. The ministry will standardize kimchi quality characteristics and introduce taste labeling (salty, spicy, sour), and pioneer new markets through developing new kimchi as a functional food. The ministry will also enhance the capacity of kimchi producers and related organizations and build governance for policy consultation. Lastly, MAFRA plans to counteract the expansion of kimchi imports and export expansion. The ministry will reinforce control of the imported kimchi by distribution stage and disseminate cost reduction technology of the domestically produced kimchi and pursue strategies for localizing exports. The ministry will examine the introduction of ‘geographical indication on the country name’ to prevent pirating trademarks of the domestically produced kimchi in foreign countries. The fostering plans in 2019 have inherited the main contents of the promotion strategies and the main focus is on countermeasures against the expansion of Chinese kimchi imports.

Keywords: Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (MAFRA), Kimchi, Chinese Cabbage, Fostering Plan