Understanding Certificates

If you are new to international exporting, you may benefit from a consultation with our specialists.

Knowing which documents are needed to register our goods in a foreign country is a daunting task by itself, but knowing where to source the correct documents in the country of origin is a monumental challenge. This can become very time consuming, frustrating, and costly if the correct dossier is not obtained. Fast Track Global Services is committed to guiding you through the process of understanding what documents are required to register your products with the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Agriculture, or Ministry of Industries.

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Certificate of Free Sale FAQ


What is a Certificate of Free Sale (CFS)

Certificate of Free Sale (CFS) or Certificate of Export is a document that serves as verification for an importing country, that the product being exported to their country has been freely sold, distributed and marketed in the United States of America.


What products are Certificates of Free Sale required for?

Certificate of Free Sale (CFS) is required for Cosmetics, Personal Care, Food, Food Supplements, Beverages, Seafood, Vitamins, Nutraceuticals, Pet food, Veterinary medicine, Biologics, Agriculture among other products.


When do I need a Certificate of Free Sale?

A Certificate of Free Sale is usually required when registering or renewing registration with a foreign government or shipping goods into a foreign country. Some countries have started to require Certificates of Free Sale along with shipping certificates such as Certificate of Origin to clear customs.


How often do I need a Certificate of Free Sale?

Depending on the products you are registering, shipping into a foreign country or renewing product registration, you will need a Certificate of Free Sale for each transaction, depending on the regulatory authority of the importing country.


Who can issue Certificates of Free Sale in the United States?

Certificates of Free of Sale are issued by the United States Food and Drug Administration, United States Department of Agriculture, States, Chambers of Commerce and Associations, depending on the industry you are in.


Which countries require Certificates of Free Sale?

Certificates of Free Sale are required by most countries in the world whenever you are exporting a product that is controlled according to their regulation.


What supporting documents are required to get a certificate of Free Sale?

Most institutions that issue a Certificate of Free Sale will need you to meet their below requirements:

1. Products manufactured in the United States you must be able to submit a written declaration from the manufacturer(a written declaration from your company if you are the manufacturer) stating that the products are manufactured in the United States.

2. For each product you would like listed on the Certificate of Free Sale, your company must submit copies of invoices showing the sale of each product to a U.S.customer with a US address.The invoices should be dated within the last 12 months and the product names must be the same as how they will appear on the certificate.Please note that if you have more than one product, we can list them all on one certificate, usually up to 20(though we will still need copies of invoices showing the sale of each product to U.S.customers).


How long does it take to get a Certificate of Free Sale?

The time to get a Certificate of Free Sale (CFS) or certificate of export varies by institutions that are authorized to issue them, it can be anywhere from 5 days to 20 days. You can now get Certificate of Free Sale or any other export certificate within 2 days by using the Swiftdox online platform, remotely from your office or anywhere in the world.


Do I have to be a Chamber of Commerce member to get a Certificate of Free Sale?

No, you don’t need to be a Chamber of Commerce member to apply for a Certificate of Free Sale, Good Manufacturing Practice Certificate or Certificate of Origin, although membership can offer preferential pricing.


Can I get a Certificate of Free Sale online?

If your company is based in the United States you can apply for export documents such as Certificate of Free Sale (CFS), Certificate of Origin (CO) or Certificate of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) online via the Swiftdox platform through its various chamber of commerce partners.


What is Swiftdox?

Swiftdox is a web-browser based software service that allows exporters and freight-forwarders to obtain essential export documentation electronically. Swiftdox solution is the fastest and most comprehensive service in North America for export documentation which also provides a built-in Apostille or Legalization option. Whether you're new to exporting or an expert, the Swiftdox solution will streamline your global operation’s needs.