IMPORTANT NOTICE TO CANADIAN MEMBERS: DRC membership does not exempt you from a CFIA Food Licence


The recent coming into force of Canada’s Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) by CFIA has generated some calls and confusion about the need for a CFIA Food Licence if you have or are getting a DRC membership. Under the Safe Food for Canadians Act (SFCA) and Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR), many food businesses require a food licence to carry out activities with respect to food.

The SFCR specifies whether you need a licence based on the activities you conduct, and not based on the type of business.

Canada’s new SFCR has two components: Food Safety & Traceability, and Trade & Commerce.

A DRC Membership is required for buying, selling, conveying produce from one province to another or importing/exporting into/from Canada. This covers the Trade & Commerce components of the SFCR.

So, even if you have a DRC membership you may still need a CFIA Food Licence to cover the Food Safety & Traceability component. We are not experts on who needs a Food Licence and who does not. My CFIA can help you with that. However, as a minimum we can tell you that if you are importing fresh fruits and vegetables into Canada you will need a Food Licence. The CFIA has excellent tools to help you determine if you need a food licence.

If you need any help figuring things out or who to contact, call us at DRC. If we don’t have the answer, we can point you in the right direction.