A First Look At Importing Wooden Décor into Canada

wooden figurine

When importing goods that fall under tariff items 4420.10, 4420.90, 4421.90 or 9505.10 such as statuettes, other ornaments of wood and articles for Christmas festivities containing wooden components, the following information is required to ensure admissibility under Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) import requirements:

  • Thickness of wood  – Is it greater than, less than or equal to 1.5 cm thick?
  • Finish of the article – Is the article completely finished for example painted, lacquered, etc, or unfinished?
  • Wooden bark – Does the item contain bark?

It is strongly recommended that this information is clearly indicated on the invoice for each shipment prior to the documents being submitted to your customs brokers. If the required information is not provided then affected importers will be contacted however, this can potentially result in delays in customs clearance.

Goods classified under these headings that are less than 1.5 cm thick will most likely be approved for import with no additional document requirements.

Goods classified under these headings that are greater 1.5 cm thick, depending on your origin, could require any or all of the following:

  • Plant Protection Import Permit
  • Phytosanitary Certificate
  • Phytosanitary Certificate for Re-export

Recently, we have encountered several transactions containing decorative wood products where the invoice description did not provide on the thickness, whether it was a is completely finished article or if it contained bark. After the goods were released the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) contacted the importer to perform an inspection on the shipment. Many products were found to exceed 1.5 cm thickness and were of foreign origin. This resulted in a Phytosanitary Certificate for Re-export being required.  As this was not prepared at the time of export, the supplier was not able to produce the required documents. Therefore the CFIA forced the importer to destroy the goods in question at the importers expense.

Should you need more information, please contact your local CFIA office at: Area and Regional Offices



Why Made in the USA is Still Good for Canada

Stamp: Made in the USAThe New York Times published an article a while back, titled Google Tries Something Retro: Made in the USA. While “made in the USA” and “buy USA” bring about images of protectionism, closed borders and angry border guards, a further review can offer a fresh perspective and perhaps a chance to realize some new opportunities for Canadian companies looking to expand their market.

Can 300 million consumers be wrong?

Directly to the south of Canada, lie 300 million plus individuals whose main focus seems to be the enjoyment of life through the art of consumption. Long known as the world’s largest consumers, the fact is that the American economy can seem to make the world go round.

While the European Union would most likely disagree with that sentiment, numerous nations’ economies rely on the United States appetite for consumption.  Aldous Huxley once proclaimed that “to travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries” and that “bad sentiments make good novels”.

A brave new world

So what exactly is Google up to?  The New York Times calls it “an experiment in American manufacturing”.  Producing their new home media player in California, Google has embarked on a trip into a past where American goods were designed and manufactured in the United States.

So why would a new found return to manufacturing in the United States be good for Canada?

Well for starters, the close proximity lends itself to shorter transit times and reduced transportation costs.  Add in a shared language, similar cultures mixed in with a free trade agreement and you have the recipe for a formidable manufacturing union.

If Google’s mindset holds true and more U.S. companies shift manufacturing back home from overseas, an entire new market will be opened for Canadian manufacturers. Is it so far-fetched to imagine that rather than buying the necessary components from Asia, U.S. companies will now look to their neighbor from the north to meet technically demanding sourcing needs?

Only time will tell if this new mindset will stick; if it does we will witness a paradigm shift in the making.


What do you think? Leave us your questions or comments below or email Ask Your Broker.



‘Interesting Cocktails’ in January with the U.S. Consul General

Canada -USA flagsJoin AmCham Canada – Pacific Chapter for their upcoming event with an inspiring guest speaker, and a chance to network with like-minded business professionals.


Event: Interesting Cocktails with U.S. Consul General, Lynne Platt

Admission: Members – Complimentary ; Non-Members $50

Date: Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Place: Hyatt Regency Vancouver, 655 Burrard Street

Time: 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

RSVP: Please complete and return this registration form to AmCham Canada – Pacific Chapter via email at events@amchampacific.com or call 855.542.6623.

[Note: Tickets will not be mailed; we will confirm your purchase by email and names will be confirmed at the door.]

RSVP Deadline: Wednesday, January 14, 2015
RSVP Deadline Extended: Monday, January 19, 2015


Event Details: No-host bar, Hors d’oeuvres served,  Business attire

About Lynne Platt:

Lynne Platt, a senior Foreign Service Officer, began her duties as U.S. Consul General Vancouver in September 2014.

Within the State Department, she specialized in public affairs, and served as the Embassy Spokesperson at U.S. Embassies in London and Paris, and at the U.S. Mission to NATO. She has also overseen large foreign assistance programs — as head of the Law Enforcement and Narcotics Affairs section at U.S. Embassy Port-au-Prince, and as Deputy Director of the Provincial Reconstruction Team program at U.S. Embassy Baghdad. Her other Foreign Service assignments were in Cairo, Casablanca, and Washington, DC.

Who should attend:

Business owners, CEOs, senior executives, decision makers, entrepreneurs and business professionals in the import/export arena will find this of particular interest. This event is open to all Canadian and U.S. businesses, large and small with a vested interest in cross-border trade and forming new business relationships.

Please share this with colleagues who might be interested.

For more information, visit  www.AmChamCanada.ca.

What is ‘Interesting Cocktails’?

Interesting Cocktails’ is AmCham Canada – Pacific Chapter’s monthly networking event, featuring a guest speaker with expertise in foreign exchange. Speakers bring insightful presentations on various business topics and current business challenges.  It is a casual evening and a great opportunity to network and ask questions of industry professionals.


Related blog post:


ACI eManifest: Updated Timelines for System Functionality and Deployment

Update ArrowCanada Border Services Agency has provided updated timelines for ACI eManifest system functionality and deployment. These timelines and dates, which could be subject to change, are available in this CBSA presentation.

It is important to note that this presentation does not address the question that is uppermost in carriers’ minds – when will eManifest  become mandatory? Most of these updates deal with technical issues. Carriers that utilize a service provider or file their ACI eManifests using the Canada Border Services Agency web portal will be largely unaffected.

Highlights of this presentation include:

  • Implementation of Integrated Import Declaration (IID) and Document Imaging Function (DIF) in early 2015, with a February target
  • Introduction of a subset of new eManifest notices, for all EDI commercial clients, that will advise on the completeness of advance data submitted to the CBSA and on the arrival and release of shipments in December 2015
  • Deployment of electronic systems (EDI and eManifest Portal) for importers to transmit advance trade data (ATD) in December 2016

The Canadian Society of Customs Brokers’ visual timeline of CBSA/PGA initiatives also reflects these changes.

If you have any questions about ACI eManifest, or any other cross-border transportation matters, please do not hesitate to contact our Carrier Relations Liaison at 855.542.6644  or via email at carrierhelpdesk@pcb.ca.

For the latest updates on eManifest visit the Carrier News section of our website regularly or sign up for our weekly Border Pro newsletter. Additionally, you’ll find the Your Broker Knows YouTube channel to be an excellent resource.


Additional Resources:


Pacific Customs Brokers Wishes You a Merry Christmas!

Christmas Greeting 2014


















The holiday season is a wonderful time for us to appreciate our clients and partners who have supported our vision of being a premium service provider. Our business would not be possible without your continued support.

We’d like to take this moment to say thank you and send our best wishes to you and your families.

We look forward to working with you in the coming year and hope our business relationship continues for many years to come.

Wishing you much success in 2015!

- Pacific Customs Brokers