Export Market Guide - Canada

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All regulatory information for exporting wine to Canada, including the regulatory environment, duties and taxes, and permitted additives.

Canada is an affluent, high-tech industrial society with the 16th largest GDP in the world. Canada is the second largest country in the world after Russia. It is geographically dispersed and with rich natural resources. Approximately 90 per cent of the population lives within 160 kilometres of the US border.

In 2001, Australia and Canada signed the Mutual Acceptance Agreement on Oenological Practices, an initiative of the World Wine Trade Group. The essential element of the Agreement is that each country will permit the importation of wines from another signatory country as long as the wine is made in accordance with the producing countries’ domestic laws on oenological practices.

In 2007, the World Wine Trade Group signed an Agreement on Requirements for Wine Labelling. The labelling agreement allows for the possibility of a single ‘global’ label through eliminating mandatory placement requirements and introducing a ‘single field of vision’ concept.

The Canadian wine market is controlled by provincial liquor control boards which hold a monopoly on the market. Each Canadian province, with the exception of Alberta, has a government controlled liquor control board which regulate liquor licensing, importation of alcoholic beverages and labelling and packaging standards. Individual provinces may also have their own set of rules. The information in this report should be used as a guide only. It is recommended that companies intending to export to Canada consult with a provincial liquor control board.

Provinces and Territories:

British Columbia, Ontario, Alberta, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, New Brunswick, Quebec, Saskatchewan, North West Territories, Nunavut, Yukon

Regulatory environment

The Federal Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act 1985 gives Canadian provinces full control over the importation of alcohol into their jurisdictions. Provincial Liquor Control Boards may set their own standards, in which case, the standards of the liquor board prevail.

The Federal Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) publishes the Food and Drugs Act 1985 and Regulations and the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act 1985 and Regulations. However, product packaging standards and labelling are administered on a provincial level. The CFIA also administers the Safe Food for Canadians Act 2018 (SFCA) and Regulations 2018(SFCR).

The Canada Border Services Agency regulates the import process.

The regulatory framework is established under the following principal regulations:

  • Federal Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. l-3)
  • Food and Drugs Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. F-27)
  • Food and Drug Regulations (C.R.C., c 870)
  • Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act (R.S.C., 1985 c. C-38)
  • Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations (C.R.C., c. 417)
  • Safe Food for Canadians Act (SOR/2018-108)
  • Excise Act 2001 (S.C. 2002, c. 22)


Import procedure for the Canada Market

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Duties and taxes for the Canada market

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Labelling requirements for the Canadian market

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Wine standards for the Canada Market

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This content is restricted to wine exporters and levy-payers. Some reports are available for purchase to non-levy payers/exporters.

Levy payers/exporters
Non-levy payers/exporters
Find out what you can purchase

This content is restricted to wine exporters and levy-payers. Some reports are available for purchase to non-levy payers/exporters.

Levy payers/exporters
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Non-levy payers/exporters
Find out what you can purchase