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Commercial shipments

As of , commercial dogs at high-risk for dog rabies to be stopped from entering Canada

From this date until further notice, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will not issue import permits for commercial dogs from countries at high-risk for dog rabies. The CBSA will deny such dogs entry to Canada. For more information: Notice to industry: New measure prohibiting the entry of commercial dogs from countries at high-risk for dog rabies – Canadian Food Inspection Agency (

The CBSA enforces regulations at the border to reduce the risks of bringing diseases, pests and invasive species into Canada and the threats to global biodiversity from the trade of endangered species.

Whether you are importing food, plan or animal products into Canada for a commercial purpose or exporting such products from Canada, you must meet a significant range of requirements. You must then demonstrate compliance with these requirements at the border.

Importer responsibilities at the border

Commercial imports of food, plant and animal products are subject to the same reporting, accounting and release procedures as any other commodities. In addition, they are often subject to specific import requirements, such as:

  • permits
  • certificates
  • licences
  • supporting documents

As an importer, it is your responsibility to know the specific import requirements for the product you are bringing into Canada. This includes any materials used for transporting or packaging the product, for example:

  • dunnage
  • wooden pallets
  • wooden crates

Ensure that your shipment is free from soil contamination and meets all applicable import requirements when it arrives at the Canadian border.

Visit Step-by-step guide to importing commercial goods into Canada for more information.

Importing safe foods for Canadians

Commercial importers of certain foods need a valid Safe Food for Canadians licence to import it into Canada. If you need a Safe Food for Canadians licence and do not have one, your shipment will either be delayed or refused entry at the border. Other enforcement actions may also apply.

Food items that require a licence include:

  • meat products
  • fish and seafood
  • dairy products
  • shell eggs
  • processed egg products
  • fresh fruits and vegetables
  • processed fruits and vegetables
  • honey
  • maple products
  • baked goods
  • confectionery
  • non-alcoholic beverages
  • nuts and seeds
  • dried herbs and spices
  • coffee/tea
  • grain-derived foods such as cereal

More information on food imports

Exporter liability at the border

Many Canadian-sourced food, plant and animal goods are subject to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and Environment and Climate Change Canada's (ECCC) wildlife export requirements.

If you intend to export any of the goods covered by these regulations, you must present the CBSA with the proper permits and certificates. Border services officers will review this documentation and inspect your goods to ensure everything complies with the requirements. If it does, the CBSA will allow the goods to be lawfully exported from Canada.

More information

Contact information

For more information, consult the following resources:

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