Backgrounder: cost recovery initiative

Phase one consultation closed on 2017-04-21. A summary of feedback received will be posted online and circulated to all stakeholders who participated in consultation activities.

Phase two: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency will circulate specific fee proposals for stakeholder consultation.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is dedicated to safeguarding food, animals and plants, which enhances the health and well-being of Canada's people, environment and economy.

Committed to continuous improvement to better serve Canadians, the CFIA is proposing to streamline and update its cost recovery program.

Streamlining and updating the CFIA's cost recovery program

The CFIA charges fees for many services that regulated parties receive. When the CFIA was created in 1997, several programs from across the federal government were transferred to the Agency and the existing cost recovery regimes for each program were adopted by the CFIA.

This has resulted in a fee regime that is complex and inconsistent across sectors and programs. The CFIA currently has hundreds of sector-specific fees, resulting in some regulated parties being charged more than others for similar services because the manner in which the fees are calculated differ (e.g. by weight, by number of inspected products, or by hour).

In addition, most fees have not changed since the organization was created almost twenty years ago, but the cost of delivering services has increased with inflation and other factors.

Consulting with Canadians

Before making any changes to its cost recovery program, the CFIA will undertake a transparent process of engaging with Canadian businesses and consumers. The goal is to ensure that views of Canadian consumers and industry are taken into account and to understand the impact of potential changes on businesses.

As part of this process, the CFIA will hold a two-phased consultation:

Phase one

Initial consultations to inform the development of a cost recovery proposal (winter 2017)

  • From January 26 to April 21, 2017, the CFIA is undertaking an initial consultation with Canadian businesses and consumers.
  • Input is being sought on a proposed streamlined list of services that will allow fees to be charged consistently for similar CFIA services, proposed service standards, the appropriate level of cost sharing between regulated parties and taxpayers and impacts of potential fee increases on businesses.
  • Feedback received from written submissions, an impact assessment questionnaire and via a series of face-to-face meetings and webinars will be used to develop a cost recovery proposal.

Phase two

Consultations on a cost recovery proposal

  • The CFIA will undertake a second phase of consultations on a detailed cost recovery proposal. The proposal will include new and updated fees and any changes made to the proposed list of services and service standards.
  • A variety of channels (online, webinars, face-to-face) will be used to reach a wide range of affected stakeholders.
  • A summary of feedback received during the first phase will be provided.

A streamlined and updated cost recovery program will support regulated parties in the food, plant and animal sector with greater consistency in fees, increased efficiencies and improve predictability in service delivery while aligning fees to better reflect the current costs of delivering service.

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