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2019-10-24 Food Safety Testing Bulletin

October 2019
Four images featuring food

One of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency's (CFIA) top priorities is to protect consumers by safeguarding Canada's food supply. The Agency verifies that industry is meeting federal food safety requirements and conducts sampling and testing to detect food safety risks.

Monitoring the levels of chemical and microbiological hazards, undeclared allergens and gluten in the food supply helps CFIA identify food safety hazards and develop risk management strategies to minimize potential risks to Canadians.

When non-compliance is found, CFIA takes appropriate action. These actions may include notifying the manufacturer or importer, requesting a corrective action, additional inspections, conducting further directed sampling or product seizure and/or recall.

Chemical Residue Reports

Image of microscopic food colour

Furan, 2-methylfuran and 3-methylfuran in Selected Foods (2018-2019)

Furans are chemicals that can unintentionally form in foods that undergo heat treatment. A targeted survey of selected foods for furans was carried out on 250 samples which included domestic and imported canned fish, canned meats, canned milks, dried beverage mixes, dried dairy products and soy sauce. Furans were detected in 70% of the samples. It was determined that levels found in this survey were considered safe for consumption. No product recalls were required.

Coumarin in Cinnamon, Cinnamon-Containing Foods and Licorice Flavoured Foods (2015-2016)

Coumarin is a natural compound found in plants and has been used as a flavouring agent in the food and cosmetic industries for many years. CFIA carried out a targeted survey which tested 747 samples of cinnamon, cinnamon-containing foods and licorice flavoured foods for coumarin. Samples included baked goods, cinnamon, spice mixes and tea. Coumarin was detected in 90% of the samples tested. It was determined that the levels of coumarin observed in this survey would not pose a human health concern; therefore, no follow-up actions were required.

A complete list of the CFIA's food safety testing reports is available.


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