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Guideline for preparing export certificates for the Canadian pet food industry
Supporting documents and safekeeping

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Exporter's declaration

An exporter's declaration must be provided for each export certificate for each shipment. It must include all the requirements listed in Section Listing of requirements from importing countries for the country in question applicable to the exported product with the exception of the animal health statements that will be certified by the official veterinarian. It must also refer to an exporter's reference number, to a batch number or a unique identifier for the shipment.

In some circumstances and in order to avoid duplication of documentation submitted to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) district office, one declaration could cover several export certificates requested for different shipments on the same day and for the same destination (or with the same import requirements). The declaration must refer to a product that has been already manufactured and not to a product that will be manufactured. Therefore, a declaration done on an annual basis is not acceptable. The declaration must be dated.

The original exporter's declaration (in paper) is required.

Traceability Certificate (TC)

Each time an attestation regarding ante-mortem and/or post-mortem inspection is required on a certificate, pet food companies and intermediates facilities that supply pet food companies with raw material must request a TC. The TC has to accompany the raw material from a registered slaughterhouse (federal or provincial) with permanent veterinary inspection or for animal by-products coming from live animals.

Every shipment (load) of raw material must be accompanied by a TC. The TC must be signed by the veterinarian in charge of the slaughterhouse or in the case of animal by-products coming from live animals, the TC must be signed by a veterinary practitioner.

The veterinarian must fill out the following boxes: the reference number and the animal health attestations. The others boxes can be filled out by the company.

A pet food company that obtains raw material directly from slaughterhouses must keep on file the TC for 2 years. Although the TC does not need to be presented at the time of veterinary signature for export certification, the TC must be available at any time for CFIA verification.

If a pet food company obtains their raw material from an intermediate facility, they must request a commercial document for each load and keep it on file for 2 years. In this case, it is to the intermediate facility that manufactures the raw material to request a TC from the slaughterhouse and keep it on file for 2 years.

In the case where the raw material is supplied from federally registered establishments for human consumption (fish establishments, meat processing establishments, etc.), a TC is not required because the raw material meets higher standards than those of category 3. However, a commercial document (such as an invoice) must accompany every load and must be kept for 2 years by the company that manufactures the pet food.

Other supporting documents

The supporting documents include but are not limited to the microbiological test laboratory reports and the sanitary certificates for imported ingredients.

Microbiological test laboratory reports (except for routine testing) must be provided when a certificate is presented for endorsement. Sampling must not consist of a composite of samples. Traceability certificates, microbiological test laboratory reports for routine testing and sanitary certificates will be verified during the annual inspection. However, the certifying veterinarian can ask for such documentation for a specific shipment at any time if needed. The processing facility must keep all export documents for a period of 2 years.

A hard copy of other supporting documents is acceptable.

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