Advertising Your Test Market Product in Canada
By: Teri Dickinson, Regulatory Affairs Group Manager, email
Advertising material includes any promotional material in print, on television, radio, the Internet, and in any other medium (social media posts).
Want to test market your consumer product?
Under certain conditions, products considered to be Test Market Products as defined by the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Regulations (Section 6) may be exempted for up to one year from the bilingual labelling requirement. In order to qualify for such an exemption, the dealer who intends to conduct the test marketing must ensure that:
- The product in question has not previously been sold in Canada.
- The product differs substantially from any other sold in Canada with respect to composition, function, state or packaging form.
- The existing labelling on the product complies with the detailed requirements of the legislation, except for those provisions related to bilingual labelling.
In addition, the dealer must file a “Notice of Intention” for evaluation and acceptance.
Want to test market your product but it has claims requiring registration?
You will need to get your product registered first. Health Canada prohibits certain kinds of advertising, including advertising for which a decision on registration has not yet been made. Health Canada considers all of the following to fall under the definition of “advertise” and not acceptable for unregistered products:
- any solicitation of orders;
- any sales;
- any communication that could be interpreted as a solicitation or sale;
- any communication about or display of logos and/or other images;
- any reference to the final label; and
- the use of the expression “registration pending” (unlike a product with a patent-pending, a product cannot be distributed if its registration is still pending).
Need help on advertising compliance in Canada?