Your food business may need a licence

January 10, 2019 - Tags: Regulations

This guest blog post is provided by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), as part of a series about the new Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR). The CFIA is dedicated to safeguarding food, animals and plants, which enhances the health and well-being of Canada's people, environment and economy.

Many food businesses will require a licence when the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) come into force on January 15, 2019.

To find out if your business will require a Safe Food for Canadians (SFC) licence or need to meet other SFCR requirements on January 15, 2019, visit the Timelines landing page to access the interactive tools and sector-specific timelines for various food commodities.  

How can I apply for a licence?

The CFIA is making it more convenient to apply for a licence or other online services provided by the Agency through My CFIA, a web portal that businesses can access anytime, anywhere.

You can apply for an SFC licence in My CFIA now. In order to apply for an SFC licence, businesses will need to attest that they have preventative controls in place.

Find out what to consider before applying for an SFC licence and make sure you understand which food category to select. The CFIA also has videos to help business owners apply for a licence and understand whether they should create a single or multiple profiles for their business in My CFIA.

When signing up for My CFIA, businesses must use their 9-digit business number issued by the Canada Revenue Agency. Businesses also need to enter a Legal Business Name when signing up for My CFIA, which may differ from the operating name.

If you already have a CFIA account number, you will automatically be charged on January 15. Businesses that wish to pay by credit card will need to sign back in to My CFIA on January 15 to pay for their licence.

Your licence will be issued digitally on or after January 15 (once payment is received and necessary verifications have been completed).

How much will a licence cost?

The licence will cost $250 every two years.

What if my business already has a registration or licence with the CFIA?

If your business currently has a registration or licence with the CFIA and it is expiring before January 15, 2019, continue your normal process to renew your registration or licence, as needed. That registration or licence will remain valid under the SFCR until it expires, even if your date of expiry of the renewed registration or licence occurs after January 15, 2019, provided there is a statement on it indicating that it is also a licence under the Safe Food for Canadians Act. Once expired, you will be required to apply for an SFC licence under SFCR.

Apply for your licence using My CFIA.

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