Every traveller entering Canada plays a key role in protecting Canadians, animals and plants from foreign diseases, viruses and pests.
PROTECTING our Plants and Animals at the Border
Food, plants, animals and related products from other countries can introduce diseases, pests, viruses and micro-organisms that threaten Canadian animals, plants and natural habitats.
For example, seemingly harmless products such as wood carvings or fruits may carry insects capable of causing significant damage to Canadas forests. Similarly, feathers, meats and other animal products could spread avian influenza (bird flu) or other animal diseases. In addition to affecting Canadian agriculture, many animal diseases may harm human health and food safety.
Because of these risks, there are restrictions limiting the types of products that travellers can bring into Canada. All food, plants, animals and related products must be declared at Canadian points of entry.
Before Leaving Canada
When Returning to Canada
Travellers are required by law to declare all food, plants, animals and related products when entering Canada. Specially trained detector dogs and a variety of other tools are present at Canadian points of entry to detect specific products. Failure to declare could lead to:
The worldwide situation is constantly changing. Before travelling, it is your responsibility to find out about the most current restrictions.
If you are unsure about an item, it is better to declare it or ask a Border Services Officer to be certain that what you are bringing into Canada is allowed. Some airports also have prohibited product bins available before you reach Canadian customs where you can throw away restricted items without penalty.
For a complete list of product restrictions and instructions on applying for import permits, visit www.BeAware.gc.ca or call 1 800 O-Canada (1 800 622-6232) / TTY: 1 800 926-9105.
To order Be Aware and Declare! publications, please contact 1-800 O-Canada