Amendment to Foreign Phytosanitary Certificate Obligations

On March 28, 2007, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) amended the Plant Protection Regulations of the Plant Protection Act. Importers no longer need to send hard copies of Phytosanitary Certificates if electronic versions are sent directly to the CFIA from a foreign phytosanitary authority – it should be clearly indicated on the supporting shipping documents.

The amendment facilitates the tracking of certificates, making the transmission of importation documents more efficient and the clearance of goods at Canadian ports of entry much faster, as well as reduces the chance for fraud. This measure enhances existing procedures; however, importers still have the option to provide hard copy certificates.

This amendment is reflective of the CFIA's commitment to streamline regulatory activities between trading partners and is consistent with Canada's efforts to develop an electronic phytosanitary certification system in cooperation with Mexico and the U.S.

For more information about this amendment, please visit the CFIA Web site or call 1.800.442.2342.