Are Canadian Produced Pet Foods and Treats Regulated? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-20-2018, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
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Are Canadian Produced Pet Foods and Treats Regulated?


If anyone has info....please share.

Interest peaked by the Lawsuit against Orijen & Acana = Champion Pet Foods ( it occurred to me that I do not remember seeing any Pet Food “RECALLS” from Canada. So, I googled for a couple of hours to see what regulations Canada had in place for this. (info from

From the quick info I found, it was a little shocking!

Looks as though you can “join” the Pet Food Association Of Canada (PFAC) but this membership is for benefits to the manufacturer NOT the pets/pet parents. (See info at bottom of post.)

Canadian authorities told me there is no place/no one to report a pet food adverse event to within Canada. The conversation I had with the Canadian national manager for Pet Food Imports wasn’t pretty, but it doesn’t deter determined petsumers.
Through several phone calls to Canadian authorities, I learned the bad news from Mr. Pierre Stang – National Manager for Pet Food Imports. Canada does not regulate pet food/treats; they are “not a controlled commodity”. Even if thousands of pets became ill believed to be linked to a pet food, there is no government authority in Canada to turn to.

2014: At the Urban Animal Strategies 2014 Summit (October 2014), attendees were provided opportunity to begin a discussion to a particular challenge or initiative. In a room of approximately 100 Canadians (veterinarians, rescue workers, breeders, pet owners), I posed the following question (with the goal of beginning a discussion)…
‘If your pet got sick from a pet food or treat, who would you report it to? In the US, we have the Reportable Food Registry (part of FDA). But my question is who do you report to here in Canada? If your pet is sick or died linked to a food or treat, who would you report this to in order to prevent other Canadian pet food consumers from feeding their own pet a tainted food?’
Not one person knew the answer to my question. No vet, no breeder, no rescue worker, no pet owner. The reason: there is no one to report pet food adverse events to in Canadian government. No one. Canada charges a sales tax on each pet product sale (earning a significant income from pet product consumers), but not one dime of that money goes back to protect pet food consumers.

This discussion was brought into a small group – joined by pet nutrition blogger Rodney Habib, a canadian pet food manufacturer (Mountain Dog), and the President of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association Dr. Jean Gauvin.
Dr. Jean agreed this is a true concern for Canadian pet food consumers. We learned that not only is there no federal program established to protect pet food consumers in Canada (adverse event reporting and notification system), but there is no pet food labeling or even manufacturing regulations established in Canada (for products manufactured and sold in Canada. Products manufactured in Canada and sold in the US or other countries would be required to abide by the respective country law).
No Pet Food Reporting System in Canada ? Truth about Pet Food

2015: One of you wonderful Canadian pet food consumers alerted me to this situation of E.coli contaminated meat knowingly being used in Canadian manufactured pet food. I called the CFIA and asked them if the pet food containing this meat was tested for E.coli or were any of the pet food manufacturing plants inspected. And below is CFIA’s response…

Hello Susan,
Below you will find a response to your question. Let us know if you need anything else.
Have a great day
Question 1:
It seems that most of the tainted meat from Pitt Meadows who pleaded guilty last week ended up in pet food. If that is the case, did the CFIA investigate? If so, what did the CFIA do to alert Canadian pet owners regarding this issue?
The CFIA’s mandate is to protect the livestock and people of Canada from diseases as listed in the Health of Animals Act and Regulations and the Reportable Diseases Regulations.
The CFIA does not regulate the manufacture of processed pet food containing animal products and by-products for sale in Canada, other than prohibiting the use of certain bovine tissues related to Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) in Canada.
The above mentioned legislation also provides the CFIA with the authority to regulate the import and export of processed pet food and treats that contain animal products and by-products.

If you have concerns related to the quality of a particular pet food manufactured in Canada, you should contact the manufacturing company, retailer or the Pet Food Association of Canada (PFAC), with respect to your concerns. Pet food recalls in Canada are conducted voluntarily by pet food manufacturers.

If your pet is ill, please contact your regular veterinarian. If a human has become ill after contact with pet food, please contact your local public health authority.

Media Relations | Relations avec les médias
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Agence canadienne d’inspection des aliments
Government of Canada | Gouvernement du Canada
Telephone / téléphone: (613) 773-6600
Facsmile / télécopieur : (613) 773-5558
e-mail / courriel:
[email protected]

In other words, no…the Canadian Food Inspection Agency did absolutely nothing when they knew E.coli contaminated meat was sold to Canadian pet food manufacturers. They didn’t care, it’s not their job.
Ever wonder why you’ve never heard of a pet food recall in Canada?

That’s because the decision to recall would completely be left up to the pet food manufacturer. No one investigates, no one forces a recall. It wouldn’t matter how many pets got sick or died – there is no one in Canada to do anything about it.
How many pet food manufacturers do you know of that would voluntarily recall their pet food, costing them perhaps millions of dollars in lost profit, when no authority requires them to even lift a finger no matter how many pets become sick or die? (Yes, I don’t know of many either.) Canadians have No Pet Food Protection ? Truth about Pet Food

Rodney Habib (Canadian resident, pet food nutritionist and blogger: ): Moral of the story: we pay taxes on our pet foods in Canada, but unfortunately, we do not get any services for it. So as far as who is checking to see what goes into your pet’s dish, the answer is no one really, aside from the manufacturer. And seeing he doesn’t have to report it to anyone, well you’re left at his mercy.

Pet Food Association Of Canada:
What are the benefits of membership?
-PFAC provides active members with a united voice on issues affecting the pet food industry when speaking to government, industry, media and consumers.
-Committee and Board participation is open to any active member company. Current committees include regulatory affairs, export, and public relations. This participation enables members to shape the policies and recommendations of the industry.
-Discussion forums and networking take place at the Annual Meeting & Conference held each fall. Members also have the opportunity to interact with and view products from suppliers to the industry.
-Active members also have exclusive access to industry information via the “members section” of our website.

Do I qualify for Active membership?

Active membership is available to pet food manufacturers and companies that market pet food sold in Canada that meet the standards outlined in Guidelines for the Canadian Pet Food Manufacturing Industry (( Membership must be approved by the Board of Directors.

What are the membership terms?

Active members pay prescribed annual dues.

"Is the Canadian pet food industry regulated?
(Per PFAC)Canadian pet food manufacturers are currently subject to several Canadian and international regulations including the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s enhanced animal health safeguards which make it illegal for specified risk materials (SRMs) - (from what I read, these are certain cattle tissues capable of transmitting BSE, known as SRM) to be fed to any animal, including dogs and cats. "

(ONLY “specified risk materials??? But what about tainted ingredients/foods?????)

"Pet Food manufacturers must comply with the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act and the Competition Act, administered by Industry Canada. These regulations specify how pet foods may be marketed to consumers, including how food is named and what information must be included on pet food labels. Members of the Pet Food Association of Canada (PFAC) also manufacture to the nutritional standards set out by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO)."

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 03:15 AM
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 11:24 AM
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Pretty sad isn't it? Which is why I feed my dogs raw and why I obtain their food from my local butcher.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 12:54 PM
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This was the reply I got to my email. I have copied the entire thing for anyone who is interested here, except their attached stock response to the lawsuit which was published on FB.

Hello Elisa,

Thank-you for reaching out to us with your concerns. The allegations is a US based claim.

Monitoring heavy metal levels is a critical control point for us, and part of our HACCP program for both our US and Canada kitchens. All our diets are tested for contaminants and we do our own third party testing of heavy metals.

Our guidelines for heavy metals are the maximum tolerable limits (MTL) as determined by the National Research Council. The lab results for our heavy metal testing comes back far, far below the Tolerance Levels set by the National Research Council.

The following link will take you to our white paper on heavy metals and goes in to more specific information and contents.

Our packaging involves food-grade materials and standards. All of the components, are non-toxic and free of BPA and PFC.

I have include an attachment with a statement addressing the allegations. We have been making food for over 25 years are confident that testing by government agencies and at Champion ensures our foods are safe for cats and dogs and provides peace-of-mind for those of us who love them.

Please do let me know if you have any additional questions. I do understand your concern owning two dogs myself Rocky & Lexi I feed them both ORIJEN exclusively, they are part of the family and I believe I am feeding them the best there is!

Warm Regards

Customer Care
Champion Petfoods LP

Toll Free 877-939-0006
11403 - 186 Street | Edmonton, AB, Canada | T5S 2W6
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for doing this and sharing Sabis Mom! (btw...was this meant for the Law Suit thread?)

I truly hope their law suit saga pans out in Champion's favor!

Last edited by Momto2GSDs; 03-21-2018 at 01:22 PM.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-21-2018, 02:54 PM
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I am in Canada and my email was to their Canadian office. That's why I posted it on this thread. I thought it may help others here.
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