Automated Import Reference System (AIRS)
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As of July 6, 2022, standard container sizes were removed for some foods as a result of the Food Product Innovation initiative. AIRS will be updated to reflect this change. In the meantime, you can consult the Food Product Innovation: summary of changes for a list of foods that are included in this regulatory amendment. Until this update is complete, please follow the following steps:
For affected importers receiving an electronic rejection notice for a missing Ministerial Exemption, the following interim measure has been implemented:
- STEP 1: Cancel your Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) submission made using the Integrated Import Declaration
- STEP 2: Prepare a paper declaration, using Form CFIA/ACIA 5272 – Request for Documentation Review – Canadian Food Inspection Agency (canada.ca), and include all required documentation
- STEP 3: Submit a copy of your paper package to the National Import Service Centre (NISC) via e-mail at email@example.com and include 'Ministerial Exemption' in the subject line for prompt processing
The Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) shows the import requirements for Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) regulated commodities.
Access the Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) (opens in new window) and follow the series of drop down options that include:
- the Harmonized System (HS) classification
- end use and miscellaneous qualifiers pertaining to the commodity for import
What to consider when using AIRS:
- importers should consult Acts as passed by Parliament to interpret and apply the law
- AIRS is only for reference
- AIRS information is updated frequently
- importers are responsible to ensure their information is accurate at the time of importation
Requesting import permits through My CFIA
Once you've accessed AIRS and determined that you require a permit to import, it can be requested through the agency's online service portal, My CFIA. By signing up for a My CFIA account, you can submit a new service request, track the status of your application and pay for the service online. A list of online services currently available can be found on the agency's website.
If you do not have access to My CFIA, a completed application can also be faxed or mailed to CFIA, National Centre of Permissions (NCP).
AIRS codes and registration types
AIRS Verification Service
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