The $15M (£9.8M) facility, located just north of Beijing, comprises analytical chemistry and microbiology laboratories, interactive training laboratories and a conference auditorium.
Mars chief science officer Harold Schmitz said 95% of the work done at the centre would be pre-competitive, in an effort to help the industry better evolve food safety and security.
Reduce food waste
Convening governments, academics, regulators, and competitors, Mars believes an industry focus on food safety will drive better access, availability and nutrition, as well as reduced food waste.
The company said it would leverage insights and expertise from more than 60 Mars partnerships including the World Food Programme (WFP), Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), Partnership for Aflatoxin Control in Africa (PACA) and the IBM/Mars Consortium for Sequencing the Food Supply Chain.
It said the opening was the latest in a history of partnerships that benefit the industry.
It cited an example from 2010, when Mars, IBM and the US Department of Agriculture completed a two-year project to sequence and annotate the cocoa genome. Like the GFSC, this was a pre-competitive effort. Another example, it said, was the University of California, Davis-Mars Innovation Institute for Food and Health.