China's online catering revenue exceeded 350 billion yuan (50.7 billion U.S. dollars) in 2016, about 10 percent of the country's total catering revenue, according to figures from China Cuisine Association.
Online catering benefited from the growth of third party platforms, while loose supervision of third party platforms has been attributed to poor quality of some services.
To regulate the sector, China Food and Drug Administration published a draft supervision document, stipulating that "restaurants that offer online catering services should have real stores with business permits."
Bi Jingquan, head of the administration, also urged third party platforms to be more diligent when recruiting caterers.
Zhu Yi, an associate professor with China Agricultural University, said that the draft will ensure all outlets are qualified and well regulated.