Who We Are

HSSA is an industry driven association directed by a board of volunteer directors that are themselves in the industry.

The HSSA building a viable herb, spice and specialty ag products industry that includes value added production and processing. They do this by linking and connecting the industry through communication, networking and education throughout the value chain.


HSSA represents the common interests of persons and businesses involved across the spectrum of our common industries, from research and production to regulations, processing and manufacturing, practitioners or final product point of sale.


HSSA participates in and/or initiate the below activities:


    Public promotion displays or speaking at such places as Crop Productions Week, Wild Rice Conference, Walk in Woods, Canadian Hemp Trade Association Conferences, Organic Connections and Conferences, Natural Health Product Research Society Conference, Canadian Saskatchewan Irrigation Diversification Centre field day and many, many other events as time and expenses allow.

    Members are invited to take advantage of our endless business networking opportunities by watching our website for upcoming industry relevant events and opportunities

    On-going research happens across the country – contact your local department of agriculture or HSSA for events in your area.

For the over 28 years Herb Spice and Specialty Ag Association has been serving its members and their industry across the country- collaborating, providing networking, education and marketing opportunities while making sure their voices have been heard.   HSSA has opened its doors to the country and world... supporting the industry as a whole from field and forest to finished product.

HSSA began with a spice grower/broker, a wildcrafter and a culinary herb grower/processor.  From its early days it support new crops from the field and forest to finished product encompassing the whole value chain including research and development.  HSSA continuesto support new and existing specialty crops across the country overall including products and processes as they evolve. It is now an integrated industry association with many partners across the world and throughout the value chain.  HSSA is known for its ability to "play with others" and to partner successfully for the benefit of all.  A prime example of this is HSSA's role as the secretariat for the Canadian Herb, Spice and Natural Health Product Coalition.

Become a Member
Our evolution has brought many changes to the industry making the world aware that yes HSSA do grow, collect, process and sell specialty agriculture products from Canada.  We work to make Canadian products the products of choice with tools to ensure quality control, ethical oversight, traceability and food safety.

  • HSSA has taken a lead role in adding value by developing voluntary tools for quality, traceability and safety.
  • HSSA has been a leader from day one in health of the plants they grow, collect and sell, in helping define and showcase the impact of consuming these healthy products and has supported the health of the communities that develop them.
  • HSSA supports research and development.
  • HSSA is a voice to ensure a fair workable regulatory environment.
  • HSSA supports a buyer spice levy help industry lead research and development.

Come join us both as a member and to celebrate our history and our future! Explore this HSSA website for more information about us - become a member and reap the benefits that membership brings.

This is your industry and your association - please help us grow and process the new and specialty crops world for Canada.

HSSA covers herbs, spices, specialty agriculture, new crops, wildcrafted products and natural health products from the field to the shelf – over 2000 botanicals across the country.

Their members grow, collect, research, process, develop and buy/sell/promote these products from a wholesale to retail level.

  • Examples of spices that are grown on a field scale are coriander, caraway, fenugreek, dill and anise.
  • Borage is an example of a natural health product grown and processed in Saskatchewan as is Seabuckthorn, Lavender, Fireweed and Quinoa.
  • Examples of wild products collected and processed by members are wild rice, mushrooms, chaga, labrador tea and a variety of berries and forest products.
  • Examples of medicinal herbs grown are rhodiola, ginseng, dandelion etc.
  • The range of culinary herbs grown is vast including basil, rosemary, oregano, garlic, etc.

HSSA works with the Hemp industry as a sister association  and encompasses Hemp and Cannabis along with all specialty agriculture crops under their GACP program.

The capacity to grown, process and develop products is vast with the skills and tools honed in Canada - so buyers can be confident that contracts can be fulfilled with premium products.

HSSA  is one over 20 national industry groups using  the Canadian Food Inspection Agency  Canadian On- Farm Food Safety Program (COFFS) as a base for their Quality Assurance audit based programming.  Good Agriculture and Collection Practices  includes ethical oversight, quality control, traceability, food safety and tailored programs to meet buyer and regulatory requirements for product from the field and forest to the shelf.

HSSA has developed and implemented voluntary HACCP-based On-Farm Food Safety Programs and Good Agriculture Practices (GACPs) with over 1400 participants trained across Canada. The goal of the COFFS program is to use HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) principles to not only enable a facility to provide protection from contamination but to ensure that quality parameters are met, ethical oversight is in place, the product is traceable and that it meets buyer and regulatory requirements.

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