Labelling requirements for fresh fruits and vegetables
Net quantity - fresh fruits or vegetables
Every container of prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables must be labelled with the net quantity. The declaration of net quantity must be clearly and prominently shown and be readily discernible and legible under customary conditions of purchase and use [208, 221, 268(1)(b), SFCR].
For consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables, the declaration of net quantity must be shown on the principal display panel (definition) and in distinct contrast to any other information on the label [221, 230, SFCR]. For type height requirements, refer to Legibility and location section of the Net quantity page.
Units of Measurement
As a general rule, consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables may be packaged by weight, volume or numerical count, unless the prescribed unit of measurement for the net quantity declaration is numerical count, as required by the document Units of Measurement for the Net Quantity Declaration of Certain Foods and summarized in the table below titled Net Quantity Declaration by Numerical Count [231(a), SFCR].
Prepackaged other than consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables must generally be packaged by weight or volume, unless they are packaged in a bag, in which case the declaration of net quantity is by weight. Certain fresh fruits or vegetables however are required to be packaged by numerical count, as shown in the following table [244, SFCR]:
Net Quantity Declaration by Numerical Count
|Fresh Fruits or Vegetables||Consumer Prepackaged||Prepackaged Other than Consumer Prepackaged|
|Ears of sweet corn||X|
|Heads of cauliflower or lettuce||X||X|
|Stalks of celery||X||X|
|Canada No. 1 greenhouse cucumbers||X||X|
|Closed containers of tiered apples, peaches or pears||X||X|
A declaration of net quantity by weight or volume on the label of consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables must be shown in metric units (definition). If both metric and Canadian units (definition) are used, they must be grouped together. For prepackaged other than consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables, the net quantity by weight or volume may be declared in metric units, Canadian units, or in both metric and Canadian units grouped together [232, 233, 236, 268(4), SFCR].
It is not necessary to use phrases such as "net", "net weight", "net contents" or "net quantity" as part of the net quantity declaration. When such terms are used on the label of consumer prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables, they should appear in both English and French.
For more information regarding the net quantity declaration, such as rounding and metric symbols, refer to Net Quantity.
Standard container sizes
Certain consumer prepackaged fresh vegetables, namely beets, carrots, onions, parsnips, potatoes and rutabagas, must be packaged in containers that correspond to a prescribed net quantity by weight as outlined for items 5 to 10 in Table 2 of Schedule 3 of the SFCR [189(1), SFCR]. As well, please note that a test market is currently in place which authorizes the marketing of Canada No. 1 and Canada No. 2 potatoes (excluding Canada No. 1 Small Round and Canada No. 1 Small Long potatoes) in 6.80 kg (15 lb) containers.
Alternatively, consumer prepackaged fresh beets, carrots, onions, parsnips, potatoes and rutabagas may be packaged in containers of any volume capacity that is set out in Table 7 or Table 8 of Schedule 3, in the case of metric or imperial containers respectively [189(4), SFCR].
The container of prepackaged fresh fruits or vegetables for which a grade is prescribed (other than consumer prepackaged fresh beets, carrots, onions, parsnips, potatoes and rutabagas mentioned above) must have a capacity that is not greater than:
- 200 kg net weight, in the case of apples, pears, peaches and apricots, or
- 50 kg net weight for any other fresh fruits or vegetables [193(1), SFCR].
Please note these container size requirements apply to fresh fruits or vegetables that are imported into Canada or interprovincially traded, but do not apply to exports [187, 193(2), SFCR].
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