Policies & Procedures


General Information

The Canadian Gift Association (CanGift) is a registered trade name of the Canadian Gift and Tableware Association, a not-for-profit trade association governed by an elected Board of Directors. The CanGift Board must adhere to the association by-laws under which your association is run. Directors set the policy and CanGift staff ensure these by-laws are applied equitably to all aspects of the association’s business.


CanGift currently maintains four distinct types of membership — Gold, Silver, Bronze and Honoured Life Members. These categories provide access to various levels of membership for a variety of wholesale companies actively engaged in the gift, fashion accessories and home décor industry, or honourees recognized by the Board for their lifetime achievements. All applications for membership are subject to the approval of the CanGift Board of Directors, based on current acceptability criteria. Membership benefits are allocated on a seniority basis.

Gold Membership

This category covers all companies who sell products to retailers and whose product line(s) CanGift determines to be acceptable for all CanGift fairs. Gold members have access to all benefits of the association, including voting privileges and the ability to exhibit at all three CanGift fairs in Toronto, Alberta and Quebec.

Silver Membership

This level of membership is available to companies engaged in selling appropriate products to the gift, fashion accessories and home décor industry (as determined by the product criteria policy established by the CanGift Board of Directors). Silver Members are eligible to participate in the regional CanGift fairs (Alberta and Quebec Gift Fairs) but are not eligible to exhibit at the Toronto Gift Fair until such time as they are invited — at the sole discretion of the CanGift Board — to become a Gold Member. Silver Members do not hold voting privileges of any kind.

Bronze Membership

This category is for companies selling to retailers, whose product mix is determined by CanGift to be acceptable for exhibition at the regional CanGift fairs (Alberta and Quebec Gift Fairs), but not the Toronto Gift Fair. Bronze members are not entitled to notice of meetings, attendance at meetings or voting privileges.

Honoured Life Members

This special membership category is for individuals elected by the CanGift Board of Directors in recognition of their activities in the furtherance and promotion of the industry as a whole. Business entities are not eligible for this honourary membership.

Applications approved for membership during CanGift board meetings are processed by the first business day of the month following the meeting, thereby establishing the members’ seniority.

The annual CanGift membership year runs from November 1 of one year until October 31 of the following year. Members receive a membership renewal package approximately one month in advance of the renewal period.

Members are required to go online to review/revise their profile information. Membership renewal payments are due no later than October 31 each year. Accepted forms of payment include (1) a properly imprinted business cheque (matching the name of the member company printed on the CanGift invoice), or (2) payment by Visa/MasterCard.

Members who choose not to renew by November 1 will be suspended. Suspended members have until October 31 of that membership year to reinstate their membership, provided the company has not been sold. Reinstatement will only occur after the member company has paid the entire year's outstanding membership fee (for the time under suspension). After updating their profile and paying the appropriate fees, the member will again have access to the benefits and services of the association. The amount of outstanding fees will not be prorated.

After one year has elapsed, suspended memberships will be terminated. Terminated members wishing to rejoin the Canadian Gift Association are required to apply for a new membership and are subject to approval by the Board. If accepted for membership, previously terminated members will be assigned a new membership seniority number. Seniority from the terminated membership will not be carried over.

It is the members' responsibility to keep the Canadian Gift Association (CanGift) informed of any changes to its business, including mail and email addresses, telephone and fax numbers. Members are welcome to complete changes online in the Member Toolkit or to provide the association with written instruction on company letterhead via fax or email.

Company Name Change

Over the course of time member companies may require a change in their name. These changes could be in the form of a trade name, corporate name, or both. Because membership is not transferable, the association only acknowledges and accepts payment under the company name with which the member applied for membership. In order to update the CanGift database and have a new name listed and recognized by the association, a copy of the official document must be submitted to the Membership Department.

• To change your trade name:

Please provide a copy of the Business Name Registration of your new trade name under your current corporate name.

• To change your corporate name:

Please provide a copy of your Articles of Amendment that illustrates a change from your current corporate name to a new corporate name.

• To change both your trade name and your corporate name:

Please provide a copy of your Articles of Amendment that illustrates a change from your current corporate name to a new corporate name and a copy of the Business Name Registration of your new trade name under your new corporate name.


Occasionally, a person or corporation acquires part of a business of a member. The by-laws of the Canadian Gift Association set out that membership in the Association is non-transferable, except for certain situations as described below.  Subject to longstanding criteria whether membership is transferred to the buyer and whether booth space can be transferred will depend on CanGift policy.


When part of a member’s business has been bought, as long as the existing, selling member continues to meet membership criteria and does not give up its membership, the purchaser has not acquired membership through the purchase in these circumstances.  If the purchaser buys part of a business of a member,  and the seller acknowledges in writing that it is giving up its membership (including any booth space it enjoyed as part of its membership privileges), the Canadian Gift Association will not object to the purchaser stepping into the seller's membership including enjoyment of the booth space.


Purchasing a member’s business can be accomplished usually by either a purchase of shares of a corporation or by purchasing substantially all of the assets of the business.

a) Purchase of Shares

Where an individual, sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation acquires control in a CanGift member corporation by buying shares, there has only been a change of control and nothing has changed in terms of the membership. The corporation is still a member and, if it has enjoyed show booth space that use or enjoyment would simply continue. CanGift has no involvement in the private purchase or sale of shares in a member corporation.  It is the seller’s responsibility to advise CanGift of the new primary contact information and the completion of the sale transaction immediately following closing.

b) Purchase of Assets

Where an individual, sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation acquires substantially all of the business of a member as a going concern (i.e., not through a share purchase), whether the seller is a sole proprietorship, partnership or corporation, then the same rules apply as described in paragraph 2.


Where a situation arises that is not covered by the foregoing, the Canadian Gift Association reserves the right – through its Board of Directors— to assess the situation and determine a fair resolution of membership status and the right to show space.

All rulings shall be made consistent with what the Board considers to be in the best interests of the Canadian Gift Association and its fairs.

The Association wishes to discourage the acquisition of member businesses primarily for the purpose of acquiring the selling member's booth space(s). Accordingly, it would be expected that in most situations, the business of the selling member would be continued by the purchasing member. Should the Canadian Gift Association determine that the purchase of a member's business was, in fact, motivated primarily by the desire to acquire its booth space, the Association reserves the right, through the Board, to take back the acquired space and make it available to other members who have a longer standing seniority as members of the Canadian Gift Association.

Please Note: Immediately upon a potential transaction of purchase or sale, the following information must be submitted to CanGift:

• Purchase agreement which should include the new contact information
• Statement of current liabilities of seller

After information of a potential purchase or sale is provided to the Canadian Gift Association, it will be reviewed to determine if all of the Association’s criteria have been met. If the information provided to CanGift does not comply with the requirements noted above and the Association’s legal counsel is required to determine if the sale is in accordance with CanGift by-laws, the vendor may be responsible for the Association’s legal fees.

The vendor will be notified by CanGift if legal counsel will be required to review any documents. If the association receives documentation regarding the sale of a member company close to an upcoming Toronto Gift Fair, every effort will be made to expedite the process, but it may not be possible to ensure booth space will be available to the buying company until the following Toronto Gift Fair.




Acceptable Product Criteria for CanGift Members

To become a CanGift member and to maintain Member-in-Good-Standing status, companies must meet established criteria. First, companies must actively supply goods at the wholesale level to industry-related retailers and second, they must meet the acceptable product criteria established, reviewed, and amended by the CanGift Board of Directors.

These criteria guidelines were recently reviewed and amended. A detailed listing of products that are acceptable and unacceptable for membership and/or display at the Toronto Gift Fair is available. To read more, click here.



A Message from the CanGift Board of Directors

An organization flourishes when it understands and appeals to things its customers value.

While the Canadian Gift Association offers services that are strategically important to you as a member, we wish to go a step further by designing and aligning the association's processes, technologies, communications formats and staff activities in support of your needs and expectations. This ongoing process of assessing our continuing relevance to members is critical to our remaining a valued strategic ally for your business.

Timely, responsive service is an important dimension of the value members seek from CanGift. Consistency in the way policies are administered is essential. Inconsistencies potentially lead to the belief that some members are favoured over others, even if that is not the case.

Member focus cannot be a “one time only” program. It requires a permanent commitment of all the association's resources. The best member-centered strategy in the world is only as good as the capabilities and desire of our staff to implement it.

CanGift’s Customer Service Standards represents an expression of the desire by your Board of  Directors, your association, and its employees to interact with members in a meaningful, consistent and responsive manner. Based on our many years of collective experience with the association, we are confident we will deliver on this customer service imperative.

— CanGift Board of Directors


President's Message

It is management's role to align all aspects of the association with member interests. We don't see customer service as simply a frontline department that dispenses information or handles complaints. Rather, customer service is everyone's responsibility.

CanGift’s Customer Service Standards reflects our years of experience interacting with members. These commitments provide direction for our ongoing activities and our efforts for continuous improvements in service delivery.

An unwavering focus on members is critical to making clear and consistent decisions in our activities. After all, members are the heart of the association and will determine the true measure of our success.

We look forward to working with you.

— Anita Schachter, President & CEO