Product of Canada or Made in Canada - What's the Difference?

There is an undeniable charm in buying local products and numerous studies have been conducted to show the benefits of purchasing locally produced goods.However, what does "Made" in Canada mean? Does it mean simply "assembled" in Canada or "designed" in Canada?According to Canada's labelling regulations, for a product to be labelled "Made in Canada", the following need to happen:

  • at least 51% of the total direct costs of production is Canadian

  • last substantial transformation of the good needs to happen here in Canada

Best Practice: "Made in Canada" claims should be accompanied by a qualifying statement indicating that the product contains imported content.

What is the difference between "Made in Canada" and "Product of Canada"?

Up until 2009 there was no distinction between products that were labelled "Made in Canada" or "Product of Canada".

The 51% Canadian content threshold for Canadian direct costs has been applied to "Made in Canada" claims since the mid-1980s and it continues to be effective. It assures consumers that a majority of the direct costs of production have been incurred in Canada when a product is marketed as "Made in Canada".

Product of Canada claims are now subject to a higher threshold of Canadian content and for goods to be labelled "Product of Canada" the following guidelines apply:

  • the last substantial transformation of the good occurred in Canada

  • 98% of the total direct costs of producing or manufacturing the goods have been incurred in Canada

It is important to note that products that do not meet the criteria for "Product of Canada" or "Made in Canada" claims, can use alternative language, such as, "Assembled in Canada with foreign parts" or "Sewn in Canada with imported fabric".