On January 15, 2019, the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) came into force. The SFCR reduces the administrative burden for businesses by replacing 14 sets of regulations with one. Also, the SFCR is consistent with international standards, aligning Canadian food safety regulations with key trading partners, like the United States, European Union, Australia, and New Zealand.
The regulations include traceability, preventive controls requirements, revamped nutritional info, and modernized labeling rules. Some requirements were immediate, while others were phased based on food commodity, type of activity, and business size. As a result of these regulations, global food and beverage brand owners must be prepared to update labels and packaging to continue sales in the Canadian marketplace.
Globally, the pandemic forced many regulations into a state of limbo, with agencies worldwide wrestling with sensibly rolling out programs while offering reasonable allowances. With the end of the pandemic insight, Canadian authorities are evaluating additional changes to SFCR regulations, including front of pack (FOP) nutrition labeling for products exceeding sugar, saturated fat, and sodium limits. Despite the uncertainty of enforcement dates, Canadian importers have started to request that their suppliers use food labels that comply with the new regulations.
Watch this on-demand webinar with Gina Reo, President of Quality Assurance Strategies (QAS), where she outlined the SFCR requirements including the extended programs and compliance timelines.