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How to Pack for your trip to Canada- Food you can and can’t bring into Canada from Africa

While planning a trip to Canada, you’ve likely asked yourself, “What food can I bring back to Canada?” Don't let worries about what you can and cannot bring home to Canada stop you from shopping the various food markets in your home country.

 Canada Customs and Border Protection have clear cut regulations about what foods you can and cannot bring to Canada for your personal use. As long as you understand what foods are permitted and you declare any foods you're carrying when you go through customs, you shouldn't have any problems bringing your foodie goodies.

Here are some foods you can and can’t bring back to Canada from Nigeria;

Fruits and vegetables: Dried vegetables like dried Bitter leaf, Dried Uziza leaves, etc. are allowed. Some highly craved fruits depending on the season you plan to travel home fruits like agbalumo are permitted up to 20 kg per person.

Herbs, spices & condiments: Herbs, spices and condiments like Hibiscus plant used for Zobo, Chilli also called Sombo (dried), Shea tree (Ori), Locust Beans(Iru), Ogiri (fermented melon seeds) , dried Bitter leaf, Chilli Powder, Yaji, etc. are all permitted

Milk: Unfortunately, Peak Milk or any type of milk in dried, frozen, reconstituted, or fresh form are not allowed.  You need a permit to bring this in. If highly craved, you can shop for your Peak Milk here.

Fish and seafood: Yes, you can bring in your dried catfish, Dried Herring, Dried Crayfish etc. as long as they are for personal use.

Meat: Unfortunately, almost anything containing meat products is off limits. This includes Kilishi (dried meats), Ponmo, Suya, seasonings, sauces and even bouillons containing any meat.

Pantry Items: Good news! Oils such as Palm oil, Coconut oil etc. are permitted. Meatless sauces, honey ((if commercially bottled and labelled), jams, baked goods, noodles (no chicken flavor) and roasted groundnuts are all basically unrestricted.

If you get caught not declaring food items, you’ll lose them and could face fines up to $1,300 and criminal prosecution. Be safe and check the CFIA website before you travel because pest and disease situations are constantly changing and requirements may be adjusted at any time. When in doubt, call to ask. Safe Travels!

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