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December 26, 2018

The Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) become effective January 15, 2019

The content for this blog was compiled through the cooperation of the Canadian Produce Marketing Association (CPMA). The mission of CPMA is to enhance the market and facilitate trade of fresh fruits and vegetables for members. Western Growers has worked closely with CPMA as a trusted partner for many years. If you are a member of CPMA, we encourage you utilize their many services, and if you are not a member, you should consider membership to keep informed on all Canadian policy and regulatory matters that can affect trade into the marketplace.

On January 15, 2019, parts of the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) will come into effect. Full implementation of the regulations will take place over the next two years. Overall, the majority of Western Growers’ members will see limited impact with “business as usual”. However, those shipper members who are requested by their customer to act as a Non-Resident Importer (NRI) to Canada will have to meet additional requirements.

The SFCR allows applications from NRI based in countries with whom Canada has a Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement. The United States is a country with equivalent food safety systems to Canada.  In the capacity of an NRI, you act as both the exporter and importer to Canada. The shipper/exporter, who is an NRI, will take on all of the responsibilities under the SFCR, including becoming licensed as an importer.

Licensing is done via a My CFIA account, and the licensing tool is now available through the My CFIA home page. In addition to having a SFCR license, membership in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Dispute Resolution Corporation (DRC) is now mandatory for Canadian companies and those seeking to become an NRI. DRC membership for all other companies is recommended, but not mandatory, to trade with Canada.

Looking for further support when exporting into Canada? The Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) has a list of CBSA Licensed Customs Brokers on their web page.

For more SFCR information, please utilize the resources below:

DRC – SFCR impact to NRI
~How the new Safe Food for Canadians Regulations Impact Non-Resident Importers (NRI) of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

SFCR Toolkit for Business
~Find out if and when your business will need to meet new requirements under the Safe Food  for Canadians Regulations

CFIA – Non-Resident Importer Information
~What is a NRI and the steps you need to take to apply for the license

My CFIA Home Page
~Manage and track service requests online, including permissions such as licenses, permits, registrations and export certificates

SFCR license How-To Video
~Helpful step-by-step tutorial of how to request a Safe Food for Canadians License

DRC Home Page
~Learn more about DRC membership and related services

CFIA Contact Us Page
~Resource tool for Canadian-specific trade questions

Western Growers wishes you a wonderful and prosperous New Year!

The Trade Practices Department is a long standing resource for WG regular members to provide answers to questions and provide real time guidance. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact Western Growers Trade Practices Department’s Bryan Nickerson at [email protected], 949-885-2392, or Matt McInerney at [email protected], 949-885-2263.