Fresh Produce Industry News from the Canadian Produce Marketing Association…

Safe Food For Canadians Regulations – Traceability.

cfia logoCFIA Releases Guidance, Including Lot Guidance. CFIA recently released updated guidance on traceability requirements (see the notification below which includes a link to the document). A link to “lot” in the document includes the following:

Lot code

The term “lot code” is not specifically defined in the Safe Food for Canadians Act nor in the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR). In general terms, “lot code” when used in Part 5 – Traceability of the SFCR refers to a code that can be used to identify a lot that was manufactured, prepared, produced, stored, graded, packaged or labelled, under the same conditions. A lot code can be numeric, alphabetic or alphanumeric.

Examples of lot code include, production date, best before date, establishment number, or SFCR licence number. In addition, for fresh fruits or vegetables, the lot code may also be the harvest date, grower identification number, growing region or any other code that may be used for traceability purposes.

CPMA and volunteer industry leaders have worked extensively with CFIA to quantify and share the impact of the regulations, especially those related to lot labelling of consumer prepackaged produce. This work led to the highlighted information above to provide flexibility for the industry in terms of what information could constitute “lot” including use of “growing region” as the lot code. This is of significant importance for field crop packed items which do not have the same capacity for consumer packaging labelling as product packed in pack houses.

At this time CFIA have left “growing region” undefined. CFIA and CPMA are still in discussions to determine what is acceptable as examples of “growing region”. This will also be a topic of discussion at CPMA’s Board and committee meetings this week.

Lot Codes on Cases: Industry is strongly urged to continue its current practice of using a more defined, traditional lot number on cases to mitigate impact in the event of a recall incident or for other purposes.

CFIA Updated information in guidance

Consult the CFIA’s Guidance Finder: Food to search for the latest Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) technical and regulatory information. For more information on the SFCR, please visit

If you have any questions, please contact Jane Proctor, CPMA Vice President, Policy & Issue Management, at or by phone at (+1) 613-226-4187 x212.

<Source:  CPMA Member Bulletin – September 11, 2019>

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Safe Food for Canadians Regulation Coming-Into-Force Date.

cpma logoFrom CPMA Produce Now Newsletter – September 2019.

This is a reminder to all members that as of January 15, 2020, the fresh fruit and vegetable requirements under the SFCR come into force. This means you must be meeting all of the regulatory requirements which are applicable to your organization as of that date.

We are expecting CFIA to move from an education strategy to an enforcement strategy sometime within the first 6 months of 2020.

For further information, please see:

[In addition, CPMA has published SFCR Guidance Documents on their website.]

  • CPMA – SFCR Guidance Document EN V4
  • CPMA – SFCR Guidance Document FR V4

Please note that CPMA and other associations are in discussions with CFIA to explore an exemption for produce from the consumer prepacked lot code labelling requirement set to come into force on January 15, 2020. Outcomes of the discussions will be shared as soon as CFIA confirms the requirements.

If you have any questions, please contact:

CPMA Fall Webinars Now Available.

CPMA has partnered with pollster Abacus Data to provide research and insights on pressing issues impacting the fresh produce industry. The results were examined in two webinars presented by Abacus Data’s CEO, David Coletto. The first webinar covered consumer attitudes towards plastics and the second shared the latest numbers and insights on the 2019 Canadian federal election.

Members can now view these recordings on the CPMA community website or at the links below:

Updates from CFIA.

This is to inform CPMA members about two recent updates from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA):

The new webpage outlines how to understand a reject message for imports declared through the Integrated Import Declaration (IID) system. For questions related to declaring CFIA regulated goods, please call the CFIA’s National Import Service Centre at 1-800-835-4486 (Mississauga) or 1-877-493-0468 (Montreal).

  • CFIA has also announced that the current plant health import permit application form 5256 has been updated. The form number 5256 and its title, “Application for permit to import Plants and Other Things under the Plant Protection Act”, remain unchanged however its content and the methods by which it can be submitted have been updated.

To learn more about the form update, read the Agency’s Notice to Industry.