Language selection


Notice to Industry – Transitional provisions

November 13, 2020

Modernization of the Fertilizers Regulations

Effective October 26th, 2020, the amended Fertilizers Regulations are in force. The amendments introduce a risk-based approach, strengthen regulatory controls for product safety, environmental sustainability and consumer protection while reducing regulatory and administrative burden on regulated parties. Read the "new" Fertilizers Regulations and their impacts.

Transitional provisions

The amendments contain transitional provisions that allow regulated parties to comply with either the "new" regulations or the "old" regulations for a period of 3 years. This applies to the manufacture, sale, import or export of fertilizers and supplements regulated under the Fertilizers Act. Combining provisions from "new" and "old" regulations is not permitted. Product proponents must comply with either "new" or "old" regulations with respect to a single product.

The transitional provisions are in place to allow regulated parties to exhaust the existing stock of products in the supply chain and minimize cost associated with adhering to the new regulatory requirements. Product proponents, are strongly encouraged to shift to the "new" regulatory regime as soon as possible and practical within their specific circumstances.

Choosing the "old" vs. the "new" regulations

The choice of either option largely depends on your particular business circumstance and your product's current regulatory status. Here are some recommendations when choosing:

Applying for new registrations during the transitional period

The regulatory status (registerable vs. exempt from registration) of certain products has changed in the new regulations. This means that certain product categories that were exempt under the "old" regulations will now require registration and vice versa, some that required registration under the "old" regulations are exempt moving forward. Please refer to the registration triggers document for details.

Note: electronic submissions are now available for new registrations and research authorizations. This, however, applies only to product proponents choosing to comply with the "new" Fertilizers Regulations. The My CFIA digital service delivery platform allows you to request, pay for and track the status of services online anytime, anywhere through a secure account that can be tailored to suit your business model. To apply for a new registration online, you must first create a My CFIA profile. Once enrolled, you will see the services available, including the Pre-market Application Submissions Office (PASO) service request of applying for a new registration. Guidance documents, videos and step-by-step walk-throughs for how to sign up for an account, manage an account and request services online can be found at: My CFIA guidance. Please note that registration renewals and amendments will be available through the electronic platform at a later date. Applications submitted under the old regulations will not have access to the My CFIA platform.

Whether following the new or old regulations, if you submit an application by email or mail, please send your application package to the Pre-market Application Submissions Office (see contact information below). When submitting by mail, it is preferable that the submission (or as much of it as is possible) be provided in electronic format (CD-ROM, DVD, flash-drive, etc.) to facilitate rapid processing of your application.

To facilitate transition to the new regulations, the CFIA has developed guidance for proponents seeking to submit applications to register or re-register products under the Fertilizers Act during the transitional period. This timeline was developed in recognition of the need to minimize impacts on products already in the supply chain, while allowing the regulated parties to take immediate advantage of burden reductions offered by the regulatory amendments. It is further intended to maximize productivity for the CFIA's pre-market registration team and minimize delays to market for new products.

Recommended timelines for submitting applications

Click on image for larger view
Timelines for proponents submitting applications during the 3-year implementation period. Description follows.

Timelines for proponents submitting applications during the 3-year implementation period

Publication of updated guidance: November 2020

Annual fall CFIA regulatory workshops: November 2020, November 2021, November 2022, November 2023

New registration (paper format, old regulations): applications accepted until May 2021.

New registration (paper or My CFIA, new regulations): applications accepted from November 2020 to beyond November 2023

Re-registration (old regulations): applications accepted until November 2021

Re-registration (paper, new regulations): applications accepted November 2020 to beyond November 2023

Re-registration (My CFIA, new regulations): applications accepted November 2021 to beyond November 2023

CFIA submission training webinars for re-registration: November 2020 and November 2021

The timelines presented in this figure provide guidance for proponents to transition to submitting applications under the new regulations. These timelines are based on the fact that a typical new registration takes 1-1.5 years to process, while a renewal (with changes to the product, it's directions for use or claims) typically takes 1 year. Applications submitted during the transition period to register new products under the old regulations divert resources to review products that, if successful, would only be registered for a short period of time. Any registrations granted under the old regulations will be cancelled at the end of the transition period if they do not lapse before then.

In recognition of these diminishing returns, the CFIA has developed these timelines to guide proponents in submitting their applicants for registration under the Fertilizers Act. Following these timelines will enable smooth transition to the new regulations and minimize resources expended on applications for permissions that would soon expire. For example: an application to register a new product under the old regulations that is received during the second year of the transitional period may result in a registration that only lasts 6 months (or less) prior to the transitional period ending and the registration being cancelled. An application to register the same product under the new regulations would receive a 5 year registration.

Contact information

Fertilizer Safety Section
c/o Pre-market Application Submissions Office (PASO)
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
59 Camelot Drive
Ottawa, ON K1A 0Y9
Phone: 1-855-212-7695
Fax: 613-773-7115

Date modified: