Version- September 22, 2006



In Canada, the regulations of the biotechnology products is coordinated by Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Health Canada and Environment Canada.  The CFIA is responsible for regulating the import, environmental release, variety registration and use in livestock feeds of plants with novel traits.  Health Canada is solely responsible for assessing the human health safety of foods.  Environment Canada is responsible for administering the new substances notifications regulations and for performing environmental risk assessment of toxic substances, including organisms and microorganisms that may have been derived from biotechnology.  These agencies regulate biotechnology products under the authority derived from atleast ten pieces of preexisting legislation that have been amended time to time to deal with new products.  A list of regulatory responsibilities of these agencies alongwith the relevant legislation is given below for agriculture biotechnology products:


Regulatory agencies for agricultural biotechnology products in Canada and the products regulated



Products regulated

Relevant legislation


Canadian Food Inspection Agency



Plant and seeds, including those with novel traits; animal vaccines and biologics; fertilizers; livestock feeds

Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act Feeds Act Fertilizers Act

Food and Drugs Act

Health of Animals Act

Seeds Act

Plant Protection Act

Feeds Regulations

Fertilizers Regulations

Health of Animals Regulations

Food and Drug Regulations


Environment Canada


Biotechnology products under CEPA, such as microorganisms used in bioremediation; waste disposal, mineral leaching of enhanced oil recovery

Canadian Environmental Protection Act

New Substances Notification Regulations


(These regulations apply to products not regulated under other federal legislation)

Health Canada


Foods; drugs; cosmetics; medical devices; pest control products

Food and Drugs Act

Pest Control Products Act

Cosmetic Regulations

Food and Drug Regulations

Novel Foods Regulations

Medical Devices Regulations

New Substances Notification Regulations

Pest Control Products Regulation

Fisheries and Oceans


Potential environmental release of transgenic aquatic organisms

Fisheries Act

Under development