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31 May 2016 : Canada & U.S. have recognized comparable food safety systems. NEW !!

Canada & U.S. have recognized comparable food safety systems.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and the Department of Health Canada (Health Canada) have signed a “Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement” to recognize each other’s comparable food safety systems.

It is considered the second time that U.S. singed the recognition arrangement for comparable food safety systems taken place during a recent meeting of the FDA-CFIA Health Canada Joint Committee on Food Safety.  Previously, the fisrt recognition arrangement was signed with New Zealand back in 2012. In addition, a similar system recognition process is currently ongoing between U.S. and Australia and the European Commission.

According to the U.S.FDA’s statement, by recognizing each other’s systems, FDA, CFIA, and Health Canada, have confidence that they can leverage each other’s science-based regulatory systems.

This official recognition on each other’s food safety systems has elaborated a framework for regulatory cooperation in a variety of areas that range from scientific collaboration to outbreak response.

The arrangement is on a basis of reciprocal food safety assessment. Systems recognition includes reviewing a foreign country’s domestic food safety regulatory system to determine whether it has both legal authorities and regulatory tools that provide comparable public health outcomes in each country.

The systems recognition will assist food safety authorities to implement a risk-based plan (scope and frequency) for inspection activities, including foreign facility inspections, import field exams, and import sampling.

It is further described that the two countries carried out the systems recognition review and assessment considering “the International Comparability Assessment Tool” (ICAT). The process comprises a comprehensive review of key elements of the national food safety control system such as its relevant laws and regulations, inspection programs, response to food-related illness and outbreaks, compliance and enforcement and laboratory support.

More information about  “Food Safety Systems Recognition Arrangement” between the partner countries is available from websites of  CFIA and U.S.FDA.


1. http://www.canadianproductliabilitylaw.com

2. http://www.fda.gov/Food/NewsEvents/ConstituentUpdates/ucm498611.htm

3. http://www.inspection.gc.ca/food/safe-food-production-systems/recognition-arrangement/eng/1461855282008/1461855380043

Date : 31-May-2016