Open to Imports

OTA estimates total organic market consumer sales of Canada at about $4 billion USD per year.

  • The total market size for organic packaged food and beverages in Canada in 2015 is US$1,255.5mn, ranking it as the 7th largest market in the world by value.
  • Per capita spending on organic packaged foods and beverages in Canada is US$35.0, which ranks as the 9th largest spending per capita in the world.
  • The largest company by sales in organic packaged food and beverages is WhiteWave Foods Co, which maintains 6.3% of total sales. WhiteWave is followed by Kicking Horse Coffee Co and Saputo Inc.
  • Organic packaged food and beverages in Canada will see slow year-on-year growth of close to 3% in 2015. This is slightly slower than the rest of the North America region, which will experience greater than 4% year-on-year growth in 2015.
  • Canada maintains a market size for organic packaged food and beverages of US$1,255.5mn in 2015, which is 3.6% of global category sales.
  • Within the North America region, the USA surpasses Canada in total value sales of organic packaged food and beverages.
  • Canada will experience slow forecast growth of sales of organic packaged food and beverages, at 4.0% from 2015–2020.
     

QUALITATIVE ANALYSIS

Quick Facts

  • The total market size for organic packaged food and beverages in Canada in 2015 is US$1,255.5mn, ranking it as the 7th largest market in the world by value.
  • Availability of more affordable organic products and the perception of their healthier attributes will continue to support sales growth.
  • As the Canadian organic product market matures, expect to see price increases and value growth, although volume sales are forecast to slow.

Market Trends

Competitive Landscape

  • The Canadian organic packaged food and beverage landscape is highly fragmented, with the leading beverage companies being Kicking Horse Coffee Co Ltd and Keurig Green Mountain Inc. In the packaged food sector, WhiteWave Foods Co and Saputo Inc are the leading players.
  • Private-label organic products expanded in the Canadian market as leading grocery retailers have emphasized the health and wellness segment.

Prospects and Growth Opportunity

  • Availability of more affordable organic products and consumer perception of their healthier attributes will help support sales.
  • Organic dairy will remain the key category of organic packaged food, with organic milk and yogurt seeing the strongest growth.
  • Educated consumers focus on food safety, clean labels, organics, and the origin of foods/beverages, which creates continued growth opportunities. 

General Health & Wellness Trends

General Economic & Demographic Landscape

Economy: 

  • Canada outperformed the Group of Seven industrialized economies during the 2008–2009 recession and its aftermath; however, the country’s pace of growth slowed in more recent years due to a housing correction and the end to the commodities boom.
  • The Canadian economy will see modest growth in the mid-term supported by increased consumption and a relaxed monetary policy.
  • Business investment is weak, mainly due to spending cuts in the energy sector.

Population demographics: 

  • Canada’s population reached 35.5 million in 2014.
  • Immigration accounts for more than 50% of Canada’s population gains and will be responsible for virtually all growth in the labor force in the future.

Income & expenditure: 

  • Consumer expenditure per capita amounted to C$29,627 (US$26,817) in 2014.
  • Education will be the fastest-growing expenditure category, followed by health goods and medical services.

QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS

Organic packaged food & beverage data

 

Data type

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

CAGR
(12-15)

CAGR
(15-18)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Health & wellness products consumption

16,578.1

16,908.2

17,223.0

17,581.1

17,956.4

18,383.7

18,846.3

2.0%

2.3%

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption

1,105.0

1,147.5

1,197.0

1,255.5

1,309.2

1,363.3

1,417.6

4.3%

4.1%

Organic packaged food consumption

819.7

842.1

867.3

896.1

925.3

954.6

983.8

3.0%

3.2%

Organic beverages consumption

285.2

305.3

329.7

359.4

383.9

408.7

433.8

8.0%

6.5%

Organic packaged food and beverages consumption as a % of total health & wellness products consumption

6.7%

6.8%

7.0%

7.1%

7.3%

7.4%

7.5%

-

-

 

Economic & demographic data

 

Data type

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total population

34.8

35.2

35.5

35.9

36.3

36.6

37.0

% Middle and upper class of total population

40.7%

40.6%

40.6%

40.6%

40.6%

40.6%

40.6%

% Population aged 65+

14.9%

15.3%

15.7%

16.1%

16.5%

16.9%

17.3%

% Population aged 0-14

16.2%

16.1%

16.1%

16.0%

16.0%

16.1%

16.1%

% Population with higher education degrees

35.7%

36.0%

36.2%

36.5%

36.8%

37.0%

37.3%

Average number of children per household

0.5

0.5

0.5

0.5

0.5

0.5

0.5

GDP per capita

41,005.4

42,079.3

43,400.6

43,388.5

43,593.6

44,105.3

44,578.3

Consumer expenditure per capita (US$)

21,953.4

22,537.0

23,310.5

23,757.4

24,092.2

24,403.3

24,693.9

Consumer expenditure per capita on food and non-alcoholic beverages (US$)

2,063.6

2,094.2

2,152.5

2,167.9

2,174.7

2,181.5

2,190.0

Retailer & urban area data

 

Data category

Rank

Urban Area/retailer

Population 
(mns)

 

 

 

 

Top urban areas by population (2015)

1

Toronto

5.9

Top urban areas by population (2015)

2

Montreal

4.0

Top urban areas by population (2015)

3

Vancouver

2.4

Top urban areas by population (2015)

4

Calgary

1.4

Top urban areas by population (2015)

5

Edmonton

1.3

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

1

Walmart Supercenter

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

2

LCBO

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

3

Sobeys

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

4

Safeway

-

Top grocery retailers by sales (2015)

5

Foodland

-

 

USDA GATS data

Rank

2015

2014

2013

2012

1

Lettuce

Lettuce

Lettuce

Lettuce

2

Spinach

Spinach

Spinach

Spinach

3

Carrots

Carrots

Carrots

Carrots

4

Strawberries

Strawberries

Apples

Apples

5

Apples

Apples

Strawberries

Strawberries

Policy Information

Government Agency(s)/Competent Authority

Authorized Government Agency(s): 

Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA)

Agency(s) Contact Information: 

1400 Merivale Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0Y9
Telephone: 1-800-442-2342 / 613-225-2342
TTY: 1-800-465-7735
Fax: 613-228-6601
Web
Canada Organic Regime information

Organic Regulations and/or Standards

Name(s) of Regulation and/or Standard: 

Canada has an Equivalency Agreement with the United States
Agreement information from Canada
Agreement information from the United States

Canadian Organic Products Regulations, 2009 SOR/2009-176
Canadian Organic Production Systems General Principles and Management Standard
Canadian Organic Production Systems Permitted Substances Lists

Canada Organic Aquaculture Standard (CAN/CGSB-32.312-2012) is voluntary, unregulated and not included in Canada's equivalency agreements.

Canada has Equivalency Agreements with European Union, Costa Rica, Japan, and Switzerland as well.

Date of Implementation: 

2009

Regulation and/or Standard Scope: 

Regulations apply to food and drink intended for human consumption and food intended to feed livestock, including agricultural crops used for those purposes. They also apply to the cultivation of plants. Standards encompass crops, livestock, apiculture, maple products, mushrooms, sprouts, greenhouse crops, and wild crops, as well as processing and handling. Wines sold in Canada may be labeled as organic even if they contain sulfites. Aquaculture standards are voluntary, unregulated, and not part of Canada's equivalency agreements.

Imported Products Requirements

Imported Products: 

A product may be imported or marketed in Canada as an organic product if it is certified as organic by a certification body recognized by a country with which Canada has an import/export arrangement, and the certification is in accordance with the agreement or arrangement referred to in that paragraph. Canada has equivalency agreements with the United States, the European Union, Costa Rica, Japan, and Switzerland.

Canada's regulations prohibit the use of sodium (Chilean) nitrate, and the equivalency agreement with the United Statesincludes all USDA organic products, whether they are produced and certified in the US or around the world. USDA-authorized certifying agents may not certify Canada-based operations to USDA organic standards. The agreement requires that raw organic produce imported be grown without its use. Hydroponic or aeroponic raw produce cannot be sold as organic in Canada. Agricultural products derived from animals (with the exception of ruminants) must be produced according to livestock stocking rates as set out in Canada's organic requirements.

Canada does not have a "100 percent organic" claim for products, so US products sold in Canada must not make this claim. All imported products must comply with all of Canada's packaging and labeling rules. Therefore, finished goods must be relabeled to gain entry and distribution. For example, labels must in both French and English.

Both the 'Canada Organic Biologique Canada' logo and the 'USDA Organic' seal may be used on products entering Canada, provided the products contain at least 95% organic ingredients and meet all the other NOP labeling requirements for the 'USDA Organic' seal. If the 'Canada Organic' seal is used, either the country of origin or 'imported' must appear near the seal. Products that contain 70-95% organic ingredients can state the percentage of organic ingredients on the product label as % organic ingredients. U.S. labeling for 'Made with. . .' organic products will not meet Canada's requirements.

Certification and Accreditation

Certification: 

Lists of approved certifiers, both within and outside Canada.

Accreditation: 

The CFIA oversees, monitors and enforces the requirements of the Canada Organic Regime using a third-party service delivery model that includes conformity verification bodies, certification bodies and organic operators. (List of conformity verification bodies). Currently, there are four conformity verification bodies:
Certified Organic Associations of British Columbia (COABC)
Committee on Accreditation for Evaluation of Quality (CAEQ)
International Organic Accreditation Service (IOAS)
Standards Council of Canada (SCC)

Definitions

Review definitions of terminology included in this website.