International Trade Certificates: Frequently Asked Questions

What is an International Trade Certificate (ITC)?

An International Trade Certificate (ITC) is a formal, unique document that contains information regarding the regulatory status of a natural health product (NHP). ITCs are also issued to demonstrate that a facility which manufactures, labels, packages or imports NHPs complies with Canadian Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).

CHFA offers two different types of ITCs:

ITCs for NHPs

An ITC can be issued for Natural Health Products (NHPs) that possess a valid Natural Product Number (NPN) or Drug Identification Number for Homeopathic Medicines (DIN-HM) issued by the Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD) of Health Canada. An NPN or DIN-HM signifies that the health product is manufactured, packaged and labelled in a site, or sites, that possess a valid site licence. An ITC is country- and product-specific, naming one product per destination country.

ITCs for GMP Compliance

An ITC can be issued to demonstrate GMP compliance with the Natural Health Product Regulations for sites that possess a valid Site Licence (SL) issued by the Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD) of Health Canada. This ITC provides information on the SL date of issuance, authorized activities, SL number and SL expiration date. The ITC for GMP Compliance does not name the country of destination.

Note: CHFA does not guarantee the acceptability of the certificates by all foreign regulators/border service authorities. Should your certificate not be accepted by the regulatory authority at a certain export destination, we encourage you to provide feedback to: so we can determine which regions are problematic and work towards a resolution in the future. It is the applicant’s responsibility to know the requirements of all of their exporting customers and to provide CHFA with details of any special requirements that may be needed.

Why do I need International Trade Certificates?

When expanding into a global distribution market, ITCs serve to assure foreign regulatory authorities that NHPs exported to their countries comply with Canada’s strict Natural Health Product Regulations, and that the facilities which manufacture, label, or package NHPs comply with Canadian Good Manufacturing Practices.

How can I acquire an International Trade Certificate?

Applicants can be confident in CHFA’s reliable, timely service and successful track record in preparing ITCs for export to more than 50 countries. Simply fill out an application form and follow our Guide to Requesting an ITC.

All questions or comments on the ITC program can be sent to: Applicants that are new to the ITC process are encouraged to contact CHFA to discuss your specific ITC needs. If you are producing a large number of ITCs on a monthly and/or annual basis, contact CHFA to inquire about our bulk rate discounts.

Note: The issuance of an ITC does not suggest or imply that the Canadian Health Food Association is deemed responsible for any misrepresentations made by the product licence holder. The issuance of an ITC by CHFA only shows that the company’s product and/or site, to the best of CHFA’s knowledge, has met the regulatory requirements in Canada. It is the responsibility of the product licence holder to market a safe and appropriately labelled product.