Automated Import Reference System Verification Service

Maintenance notice

The following services may not be available December 15th, 2019 between 5:00 am and 7:00 am EST

  • CFIA Website (
  • Automated Import Reference System (AIRS)
  • CFIA Automated Shipment Inspection Status Search Tool (ASISST)
  • Electronic Data Interchange – Integrated Import Declaration (EDI – IID)

Please contact the National Import Service Centre at 1-800-835-4486 if you have questions or need assistance.

Important notice: hours of service – December 24-25

On December 24th and 25th, the NISC's service hours will remain from 7am to 3am (Eastern time) but its telephone line will not be monitored from 6pm on December 24th to 7am on December 26th (Eastern time). If you need to reach the NISC for assistance during this time period, please email

The Automated Import Reference System Verification Service (AVS) is designed to validate the coding of multiple Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) commodities in a single request for importers/brokers. It minimizes the number of rejected Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) requests due to incorrect entries, or missing or invalid AIRS coding in EDI transactions. AVS helps importers/brokers validate multiple commodities against the most current AIRS database. Within minutes, AVS identifies which line in a transaction, if any, is incorrect. In addition, AVS clearly indicates the line number in error, thereby eliminating the need for importers/brokers to contact the National Import Service Centre (NISC) to pinpoint the error.

Benefits of using AVS

  • AVS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • all product lines can be verified at once, to a maximum of 400 lines per message
  • AVS clearly identifies the line number in error
  • AVS reduces the number of rejections in EDI
  • AVS reduces calls to the NISC to verify status and to identify the errors
  • AVS minimizes delays at the border and expedite the release of shipments
  • AVS provides a more efficient means to validate and update AIRS codes

Related links

AVS Webkey

To request an AVS Webkey please contact the CFIA EDI Coordinator and provide your Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) account security number.

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