Do I need to be certified?
has an organic claim on the label and is sold between provinces or territories or imported; or
displays the Canada Organic Logo on the label and is sold within or outside of Canada.
Under the COR, producers, processors, handlers, and manufacturers need to be certified. In some cases, other types of operations (e.g., retailers) are required to have certification within provincial standards.
Provincial or territorial organic regulations govern organic claims for products that are not bearing the Canada Organic Logo, AND are produced and sold within provincial or territorial borders. Currently British Columbia, Manitoba, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Alberta have provincial regulations. Other provinces are in the process of developing standards.
Organic products imported from countries with whom Canada has established an equivalency arrangement must be certified by a certification body accredited by that foreign country and recognized by Canada. Certification bodies recognized under an equivalency arrangement include: the European Union, Japan, the United States, Switzerland, Taiwan, United Kingdom, and Costa Rica.
How do I get certified?
Certification to the Canadian Organic Standards is carried out by a certification body (CB). CBs are accredited by Conformity Verification Bodies, which have been designated by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to assess, recommend for accreditation, and monitor CBs.
Certification begins with an application, which is reviewed by a CB. Detailed information on inputs, processes, and procedures is carried out to ensure compliance with the Canadian Organic Standards.
The certification process will vary based on the type of operation, product, and region. Review the COR for more information on certification and contact an accredited CB to discuss your specific situation.