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Customs Broker for Plastic Products

Business Without Borders ®

Importing plastics into Canada or the U.S. involves understanding and complying with a range of regulations, documentation, and compliance requirements to ensure smooth customs clearance and adherence to environmental standards.

Hiring a licensed customs broker such as A & A Customs Brokers can simplify the process, ensuring all documentation and compliance requirements are met.

Here are the key aspects you need to know:

Regulations and Compliance

  • checkedCustoms Requirements: The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is responsible for enforcing import regulations. Importers must comply with the Customs Acts and provide accurate documentation.
  • checked Tariffs and Duties: Tariffs on plastics vary based on the type of plastic and its use. Check the Harmonized System (HS) codes to determine the applicable tariffs and duties.
  • checked Prohibited and Restricted Items: Certain plastics may be prohibited or restricted due to environmental concerns, such as those containing hazardous substances.


  • checked Commercial Invoice: This should include a detailed description of the goods, their value, and the terms of sale.
  • checked Bill of Lading or Airway Bill: Proof of shipment.
  • checked Certificate of Origin: Required for preferential tariff treatment under trade agreements like CUSMA (Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement).
  • checked Other Certificates: Depending on the type of plastic, additional certificates such as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) might be needed.

Labelling and Standards

  • checked Canadian Standards: Ensure the plastics meet Canadian standards and regulations, which might include health, safety, and environmental guidelines.
  • checked U.S. Federal Standards: Plastics must meet U.S. standards and regulations, including health, safety, and environmental guidelines set by agencies like the FDA (if used in food packaging) or the EPA.
  • checked Labeling Requirements: Plastics must be labeled correctly, including information on content, safety warnings, and recycling instructions if applicable.

Environmental Regulations

  • checked Chemical Management: Plastics that contain certain chemicals might be subject to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA). This includes restrictions on hazardous substances.
  • checked Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA): Plastics containing certain chemicals must comply with the TSCA in the U.S., which regulates the introduction of new or already existing chemicals.
  • checked Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR): Some provinces require importers to participate in EPR programs, where they are responsible for the end-of-life management of plastic products.
  • checked Recycling Regulations: Compliance with national and provincial recycling regulations is essential.

Trade Agreements

  • checked CUSMA: The agreement provides benefits such as reduced tariffs for goods that qualify under the rules of origin.
  • checked Other Trade Agreements: The U.S. and Canada have multiple free trade agreements that might impact tariff rates and import regulations for plastics.

Import Procedures

  • checked Import Declaration: An import declaration must be filed electronically via the CBSA’s Single Window Initiative (SWI), or through the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE), the CBP’s single window system.
  • checked Inspections: Plastics may be subject to inspection by the CBSA or the CBP or other regulatory bodies to ensure compliance with each country’s laws.

Overall, leveraging the expertise of a licensed customs broker such as A & A Customs Brokers can streamline the import/export process for plastics into the USA or Canada, ensuring compliance with customs regulations, minimizing delays, and optimizing costs

In addition to customs entry and trade compliance support, A & A Global Logistics can help you plan for the transportation and logistics of importing or exporting pulp and paper products, including choosing appropriate shipping methods, packaging materials, and handling procedures to ensure product integrity and timely delivery.

If you are considering making a switch, let’s have a conversation so you can learn how with A & A Customs Brokers, there is a better way. We can help ease the transition process and take the fear out of switching!

NOTE: All details pertaining to CARM R2 processes are based on the current information available at the time of writing. As this is subject to change, it’s recommended you periodically check in with the CBSA or your customs broker.