Diet-shake maker Eagle Health wants to help to stem China’s ‘explosive’ diabetes rate one drink at a time, this week opening education centres as part of its marketing plan.

China has the most diabetics in the world, with around 11 per cent of its population suffering from the illness and some 36 per cent “pre-diabetic”, according to a study published in June by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The International Diabetes Federation estimates 10 per cent of Chinese adults — 114.4 million people — are living with diabetes.

Critics have been quick to point the finger at Western fast-food culture, introduced with the likes of McDonalds and KFC. But Eagle Health is focusing on the grass roots level, establishing four diabetes “education and experience outlets” in its home town — the south-east port city of Xiamen.

Eagle Health (ASX:EHH) makes and markets pre-meal shakes for Type 2 and Pre-Type 2 diabetes throughout mainland China, leveraging Australia’s clean and green reputation.

The shares fell 3 per cent on Thursday to 35c.

Yak Bone Powder - another product offered by Eagle Health
Yak Bone Powder – another product offered by Eagle Health

Eagle’s first shipment of shakes arrived in Xiamen last week, for launch this month.

“We are honoured to be able to provide Type 2 diabetes sufferers in China such a world class and clinically validated solution to support them in their lifestyle intervention in order to manage this serious national health issue,” managing director Xhang Mingwang told investors.

“We know that Chinese consumers and their healthcare practitioners will recognise the clinical effectiveness and the high quality product developed in Australia and now produced by the trusted Eagle Health Brand.”

EHH listed in July this year following a $25 million raise at 40c a share and have traded between 35c and 36c ever since.

In the half year to June 30, it made revenues of $35 million and had $32 million left in the bank.

The company sells a range of health products into China, listing products such as donkey-hide gelatin protein powder and yak bone powder among others.