Canada Organic Equivalency Agreements

Domestic producers will benefit from simplified and optimised certification (under which they previously had to pay for multiple certifications or operate parallel systems in their companies). Domestic producers will also benefit from the overall growth of the organic market, which attracts more consumers and improves the continuity of supply of organic products on store shelves. The internal market will develop on the basis of a facilitated supply and demand chain and a reduction in regulatory inefficiencies and redundancies that will benefit producers, producers, consumers and retailers. Although equivalence opens the domestic market to imports, the increase in “product” and “local” purchasing decisions maintains a competitive advantage over imported products. The CFIA verifies the effectiveness of organic equivalence agreements through the implementation of peer reviews. The cfia`s approach is described as part of the cfia peer review procedure under the Canadian Organizational Regime (COR). “Agricultural products manufactured using sodium nitrate may not be sold or marketed in Canada as eco-organic.” The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) organic label can be downloaded from the National Organic Program website. The use of the organic label is voluntary and its use, either alone or with the Canadian organic logo, is allowed, provided that the organic content of the product is equal to or greater than 95%.

In the supermarket, a pineapple imported from Chile and certified “US Organic Standard” (NOP) bears the Canadian organic logo. Welcome to the global organic market! All organic products covered by this Agreement and imported into the United States must comply with USDA organic labelling rules. For more information, see bio-label – Agricultural Marketing Department. Canada`s organizational regime is implemented by the Canadian Organizing Agency (COO), which is part of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). The CoR`s framework is that of the 2009 Organic Products Regulations (OPR 2009), which set out labelling requirements for organic products and the different actors and implementation infrastructure. All products sold in Canada as bearing the Canadian organic logo must have been certified either by an accredited certification body or by a certified certification body that operates under a national system that the CFIA has considered equivalent. Both cfia and USDA have their own standards and rules defining organic production and market requirements. Under the equivalency agreement, CFIA recognizes imported organic food, livestock, and plants produced in accordance with U.S.

organic standards by USDA-accredited certification bodies under the NOP. Similarly, the USDA will recognize imported organic products manufactured to Canadian organic standards from CFIA accredited certification bodies under the NRC. This “free trade” of organic products applies to both ingredients and finished products. Products covered by this equivalence agreement have voluntary access to one or both logos (as indicated above). Since some differences in standards were found to be significant for domestic policy objectives, consumer needs or production standards, the equivalence agreement also contains some additional requirements that must be met before a product is considered “equivalent” by the importing country. During their negotiations on ecological equivalence and in consultation with their national stakeholders, the USDA and CFIA found that some technical differences between the two standards needed to be maintained by the importing country. . . .

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