Canadian Import Law: Up the Allowable Limit on Olive Oil

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The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) recently made some changes in the Safe Foods for Canadians Act that negatively affects how we bring our home-grown olive oil into Canada. Below is the verbiage outlining the regulations in section 10(2) of the Act:

“It is prohibited for a person to send or convey from one province to another — or to import or export — a prescribed food commodity unless the person is authorized to do so by a registration made under paragraph 20(1)(a), by a license issued under that paragraph or by both such a registration and license, as provided for in the regulations.”

What this means is that in order for any given person to import a commodity (in this case olive oil) into Canada, one now requires a license that complies with specific requirements (preventative control plans, preventative controls, traceability). The exception to this rule would be if the imported item is intended solely for personal use (section 19 in the Act), and that the item falls within the newly imposed allowable quantities (as described in section 21(a) of the Regulations). One can now only import 50L. While at first glance this may not seem significant, this will have quite the impact to the current environment for the following reasons:

  • It will create unnecessary complexity for the consumer. The new world will require the consumer to get both a license, and to also implement the required protocols.
  • There will be incremental costs for the consumer. Whereas the current expenses are solely the price of shipping the goods, in the new world one will need to pay for a license and renew it bi-annually.  
  • It will restrict the ability to share goods with loved ones, as the allowable allotment is quite low.

Sign this petition if you agree that CFIA needs to increase the allowable limit. Together our voice can drive change.