SFC (Safe Food for Canadians) Licence Requirement for Food Importers

Importing manufactured foods into Canada? Then you need a Safe Food for Canadians (SFC) licence, and starting February 12, 2024, things just got stricter. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) will now automatically verify SFC licences at the border. Without a valid license, your shipment is denied entry, leaving you facing costly delays and potential losses.

But fear not! Quality Smart Solutions, your trusted partner in Canadian food importing, has served over 2,000 brands over two decades and is here to help you navigate this new landscape with ease.

Actions required before February 12th:

As applying for an SFC license can take up to 15 business days, don’t wait! Ensure you meet the following requirements:

  • Step 1: Secure an SFC License: We guide you through the application process, ensuring you acquire the right license for your product and activity.
  • Step 2: Verify License Validity: Our experts help you confirm your license is active, covers “Importing food,” and includes the specific commodities you’re importing.
  • Step 3: Submit Accurate Declarations: We assist in double-checking your import declaration and license number before submission, minimizing rejection risks.

For customs brokers:

Ask the commercial food importers you work with to provide their SFC licence number and make sure it is entered correctly on the import declaration.

For non-resident importers:

If you qualify as a non-resident importer, your SFC licence must be issued for the activity “Importing food” and for the commodities you intend to import.


  • Accuracy is key: Double-check all documentation before submitting.
  • Early submission is your friend: Declare your imports up to 90 days in advance to avoid border delays.

Contact Quality Smart Solutions today for a free consultation on confidently importing your manufactured food products into Canada. Reach us at info@qualitysmartsolutions.com or our Toll-Free number 1-800-396-5144.

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