- COVID-19 order for B.C. restaurants, cafeterias and coffee shops changesOn June 30, the B.C. Provincial Health Officer made a new Food and Liquor Serving Premises Order. The new order replaces earlier … Continued
- Health Canada introduces amendments to the regulation of natural health products and opens consultation periodHealth Canada recently proposed new amendments aimed at improving the clarity of labelling on natural health products. While RCC is supportive of this … Continued
- Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) expected to apply measures on romaine lettuce imported from Salinas CARCC received advance notice from CFIA with regards to its planned risk mitigation measures for the romaine lettuce fall import season. … Continued
Ensuring food safety for Canadian consumers
Food safety is a top priority for Canada’s food retailers. The Retail Council of Canada works closely with governments and other industry partners to ensure that Canada continues to have meaningful, workable, best-in-class food safety standards, and that retailers have the tools and knowledge they need to develop and implement effective food safety programs.
Advocating for retailers
Food safety recalls & advisories – Working with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)
Successfully navigating the world of food safety investigations, recalls and advisories is critical for retailers and consumers. RCC is continually working with the federal government to improve the process and ensure that clear, timely and accurate information is available to retailers and Canadian consumers when they need it.
Significant improvements for retailers on Safe Food for Canadians Regulations
New food safety regulations came into force in January 2019 – the biggest change in Canada’s food safety laws in over 25 years. RCC helped shape the requirements in a way that was workable. RCC was successful in having enforcement activities around new requirements for the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations (SFCR) postponed to allow food retailers to focus on COVID-19. Postponed requirements include:
- All new requirements that were slated to take effect on July 15, 2020 for manufactured foods, including licensing, preventive control plans, record keeping and reporting have been postponed indefinitely.
- Fresh Fruit and Vegetable lot codes compliance deadline was postponed to January 15, 2021 from January 15, 2020. CFIA posted update guidance here.
- Implementation of the requirement to upload a copy of the organic certificate for imported organic products has been postponed to January 2022.
Managing food safety and regulatory compliance issues
Retailers experience common compliance challenges from time-to-time that require support of RCC to resolve with government in a fair manner. Examples of issues include imported food compliance, organic certification documentation, acceptable compliance timelines for ready-to-eat meats, acceptable food safety test methodologies, etc.
Tools and Resources
Quebec: Food Safety Committee
The Quebec Food Safety Committee is comprised of retail members in Quebec that sell food as part of their business. The committee helps members to stay ahead of the food safety curve, liaising between industry and government to shape government policy and regulation in a way that’s retail friendly and ensures food safety. The committee also assists with real-time ongoing issues management, helps set up the direction, policy and overall framework and approach to food safety, helping members navigate and manage related issues specific to the province.
Contact Jason McLinton, Vice-President, Grocery Division and Regulatory Affairs firstname.lastname@example.org more information on:
- Joining RCC’s national Food Safety and Regulatory Committee.
- Individual help on compliance programs including written preventive control plans that comply with the regulations. (Service offered to RCC members only.)
Contact Francis Mailly, Director, Government Relations, Grocery Division at email@example.com for more information on:
- Joining RCC’s Quebec Food Safety Committee.
- Food and grocery issues relating to food safety and the fight against food waste.