New CFIA regulatory responsibilities regarding caffeinated energy drinks

New CFIA regulatory responsibilities regarding caffeinated energy drinks

In response to an increasing number of consumer inquiries, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) would like to inform Canadians about regulatory responsibilities with respect to caffeinated alcoholic beverages.The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has regulated food products for many years, with a particular focus on the safety of Canadians. This includes ensuring products are packaged, labeled, and advertised by government regulations and guidelines that set standards to protect the health and safety of consumers.

In response to an increasing number of consumer inquiries, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) would like to inform Canadians about regulatory responsibilities concerning caffeinated alcoholic beverages. in this news article, we’ll review the CFIA recall warnings, the impact of this news on vulnerable populations, CFIA inspection activities, and how our Supplemented Foods service can help you.

CFIA recall warnings:

Several brands of caffeinated energy drinks have received recall alerts from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). We know that many importers, merchants, and internet vendors are offering customers caffeinated energy drinks (CEDs) that must comply. This serves as a reminder that it is your responsibility to ensure that the CEDs you produce, import, or distribute comply with Canadian regulations, including the need that they do not contain more than 180 mg of caffeine per single-serving container, and display the necessary warnings required for Supplemented Foods.. Supplemented Foods (SFs) are prepackaged foods with 1 or more supplemental ingredients. Supplemental ingredients include things such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids, or caffeine.

Impact on vulnerable populations:

Drinking CED products may negatively impact vulnerable groups, including children, women who are breastfeeding or pregnant, and adults who are caffeine sensitive. Negative health impacts are also anticipated if other people consume these goods excessively. These groups rely on and have faith in the industry not to offer them goods that do not adhere to Canadian food safety regulations. If you market a product that falls short of these requirements, it may be ingested by a vulnerable consumer and cause harm to them.

CFIA inspection activities to locate non-compliance:

The CFIA is conducting inspections to determine who needs to comply. The CFIA may take legal action when non-compliance is discovered, including product seizure and detention, license suspension, administrative fines, or criminal prosecution.

License holders under the Safe Food for Canadians Regulations will still be obligated to inform the CFIA if their food threatens human health.

If you import CEDs:

  • Ensure you meet the requirements set out in your Temporary Marketing Authorization Letter (TMAL) from Health Canada or under the newly implemented Supplemented Foods Regulations
  • Ensure your products meet the needs of the regulations at the time of import If you distribute CEDs :
  • Ensure your product meets the requirements before distributing further.

How can our Supplemented Foods Service help you?

Quality Smart Solutions can help ensure your Supplemented Food products, including CEDs, comply with the newly implemented Supplemented Food Regulations. We will review your product formulation to check that caffeine levels are below the 180 mg limit (if applicable) and that the rest of the formulation complies with Health Canada’s list of permitted supplemented food categories as well as the list of permitted supplemental ingredients. After tailoring your formulation to meet the regulations, we can help bring your product label into compliance by making sure all the required labeling elements are present, including the supplemented food caution identifier and high caffeine content declaration. Quality Smart Solutions has recently helped several brands bring their energy drinks into compliance! Reach out to us today.

Helpful Information

To assist the industry in the interpretation of the SFs requirements and to ensure their SFs are compliant, the following resources are available:

Firstly, QSS can help with formula review, product labeling, and nutrition facts creation (for Canada and the USA).

Secondly, we can also help with registering supplemented foods with TMALs (Temporary Market Authorization License) or reviewing when the new Supplemented Food Regulations are published. 

Thirdly, we help with Safe Foods for Canadians Regulations (HACCP, PCP, Importer of Record Licensing, NDIN/GRAS Ingredients and GRAS Notifications). 

Help with facility registration, FSVP agent, and US Agent. 

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About the author

Picture of Andrew Parshad
Andrew Parshad
Andrew Parshad is President, CEO and founder of Quality Smart Solutions, a North American compliance solutions provider offering regulatory and quality assurance services to comply with FDA & Health Canada brands and ingredients regulations in the categories of dietary supplements, foods, cosmetics, OTC drugs and medical devices. Andrew started Quality Smart Solutions in 2007. Since that time he and his firm has served thousands of clients worldwide . Andrew's affiliate company, Quality IMPORT Solutions that offers import agent services into the Canadian market as a government licensed importer for foods, dietary supplements and medical devices.


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