On November 22, 2019, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a notice for new requirements for all romaine lettuce products from the Salinas growing region of California and for salad mixes containing romaine lettuce from the United States. The Canadian market remains open to U.S. lettuce, which constitutes nearly all lettuce in the Canadian market at this time of year. The United States exported more than $400 million of fresh lettuce to Canada in 2018.
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has advised Canadian consumers to follow the U.S. CDC’s public health advisement to avoid consumption of romaine lettuce from the Salinas, California growing region. Additionally, PHAC has advised that romaine lettuce harvested in Canada is not affected by the outbreak.
- The Salinas growing region in California is identified as the counties of Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, San Benito, and Monterrey.
- All romaine lettuce exports from California require a Proof of Origin, by means of a letterhead, on a separate page, providing that the lettuce was not harvested in the Salinas growing region along with the exporter signature and date of signing.
- All salad mixes from the United States containing romaine lettuce require a Proof of Origin, by means of a letterhead, on a separate page, providing that any romaine lettuce in the mix was not harvested in the Salinas growing region along with the exporter signature and date of signing.
CFIA will update requirements pending any new information from the U.S. FDA.
The term “letterhead” refers to the corporate letterhead of the exporting company. The term “Proof of Origin” refers to the exporter’s written declaration.
For more information:
CFIA National Import Service Centre
Tel: +1 (800) 835-4486 / +1 (877) 493-0468