Dairy Import Activities
Appendix 10 Import Documentation Flowchart for Product Release

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Although there are many ways to have the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) clear a shipment, the usual procedures include;

1. Forms: Brokers gather and fill out the paperwork that is required to release the shipment.

1.1 The documents related to standardized dairy products must be presented to the Import Service Centre (ISC) for approval prior to obtaining the CBSA clearance. The documentation includes: Request for release approval form (CFIA/ACIA 5272), import declaration and Annex A (CFIA/ACIA 4560, CFIA/ACIA 5304), commercial invoice or manifest and if applicable zoosanitary certificates or animal health import permit.

ISC reviews the documents for completeness. An invoice is generated for the applicable fee as per Appendix 9. If the documentation is complete and satisfactory, the ISC faxes the documentation to the broker and to CFIA inspection office. The broker forwards all documentation plus CFIA decision to CBSA for release.

1.2 Non-standardized dairy products such as yogurt and kefir do not require an import declaration and are presented directly to the CBSA for clearance, as indicated in the Automated Import Reference System (AIRS). The CBSA forwards the import documentation to the ISC.

1.3 When documents are incomplete the ISC rejects or refuses the shipment.
ISC will reject the entry when a document is missing, incomplete or the information presented on all documents does not match (quantity, description, etc.).

The shipment will be refused when issue cannot be resolved such: no zoosanitary certificate available or no import permit from animal health (when required).

2. Electronic Data Interchange (EDI): This allows importers to enter and forward all necessary information pertaining to the shipment electronically to CBSA system. This information is forwarded to the ISC from CBSA. The ISC reviews the entry and if required, contacts the broker for any additional paperwork. The ISC also generates an invoice as per Appendix 9. The request must be inputted by the broker at a minimum of two hours prior to the shipment arriving at the border to make sure it is processed in a timely manner. The pre-approved shipment is not held at the border. At the border, the driver presents to the CBSA officer the tracking code (transaction number approved) which is linked to the EDI submission. It is scanned on CBSA computerized system and the ISC decision is showed on the screen (Reject, Refuse or Approved).

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Flowchart - Import Documentation for Product Release. Description follows.

Description for Flowchart - Import Documentation for Product Release

Broker prepares documents and submits electronically or manually to ISC / CBSA

When the documents presented are satisfactory

  • ISC approved; request stamped (dated), signed and faxed to the broker
  • Approved (will be released upon CBSA final decision)
  • Border crossing
  • Importer warehouse

When the documents presented are not satisfactory it will either be:

  • Refused, no clearance and ISC or Operations will request a proof of return or reexport or destruction of the product under CBSA supervision in accordance with "International waste policy".


  • The notice is rejected and no decision until further information is provided
  • Once further documentation is provided, it will either be approved or rejected as described above
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