Checklist for food export

Although the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) came into force on January 15, 2019, other requirements will be introduced in 2020 and 2021 based on food commodity, type of activity and business size. For more information, refer to the SFCR timelines.

PDF (144 kb)

This checklist is provided as an overview of the steps needed to be taken when you are considering exporting food products from Canada.

General requirements

  •  1. I have a valid export licence or registration (if applicable)
  •  2. My product has been manufactured or prepared in accordance with Canadian regulations (including labelling)
  •  3. I have preventative food safety controls in place
  •  4. I am aware of the fees for certification, inspection and sampling for my product through cost recovery
  •  5. I have traceability procedures for my product including any suppliers and buyers one step forward and one step back
  •  6. I have all the documents required for the export of my product

Foreign country requirements

  •  1. I have consulted and am aware of the importing requirements for a specific country for my product through:
    1. Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Export requirements library
    2. Foreign authority
    3. My importer
    4. Market Access Secretariat
    5. Trade Commissioner
  •  2. The country has no importing requirements available specific to my product
  •  3. My establishment is on the list of eligible establishments for the specific country

Food-specific requirements

  •  1. My product has specific requirements, and meets the programme or certification body requirements as needed above and beyond those of Canada which have been recognised by the foreign competent authority
    (Ractopamine in Pork, Halal Meat to Muslim Countries, CSSP, Organic)

Export certification

  •  1. I need to apply for an export certificate from the CFIA in order to export my product
  •  2. I meet the attestations and statements of the export certificate and have completed the certificate as required
  •  3. I have notified the CFIA for any inspection or testing required in order to be eligible to export

Validation / verification

  •  1. I am aware that at any time, the foreign country I am exporting to may come and audit my establishment to be on their export list, or they may visit my establishment as part of an audit of the CFIA's inspection systems.
  •  2. I may be asked to take corrective actions that are above those of the Canadian regulatory requirements to maintain specific market access.

Shipping foods for export

  •  1. I am aware of the use and control of certificates and certificate numbers
  •  2. I am aware of the use and control of stamps, stickers and seals for my product
  •  3. I am aware of the food safety requirements for the transportation method chosen for my food
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