Wednesday, 1 October 2014

23andMe Offers Canuck Service

Can you spot the difference between these two offers from 23andMe?

The company, which was prohibited by the FDA from offering their health service in the US last fall, now offers the health and ancestry services together through a "Canadian" offshoot. How Canadian is it? Look at the package? See "bienvenue à vous" and "Kit d'ADN". Doesn't that make you proud to be Canadian?

You can find it by going to, which is immediately redirected to I couldn't locate a French language site.

Did you notice any other difference? The price maybe? $199 Canadian for the health and ancestry service, $99 US for the ancestry service.

When the company discontinued the full service last fall the price was $99 US. Why the increase?  If the full service is reinstated in the US will that be the new price for the combined service?

And why does shipping the kit cost $9.95 in the US and $19.95 in Canada? $19.95 is a big improvement over the previous shipping cost to Canada, but why the difference, especially since the spit collection kit used is a Canadian product?

Will we see US residents flocking across the border to collect Canadian kits or find ways through Canada to get around the FDA strictures in this new era of prohibition? Maybe 23andMe is hoping so!

1 comment:

Dianne said...

According to the press release Canadians who purchased the test between Nov 22 2013 and Sept 30 2014 will automatically have their health info available for free.

The significantly fewer health tests that are available for the Cdn service are the result of "conversations with a number of leading stakeholders", resulting in only markers "with well-established associations that have clinical validity". Examples that don't appear on the Cdn list are Rheumatoid Arthritis and Type 1 Diabetes.

-US Health Risks 122 vs Cdn Genetic Risk Factors 12
- US Inherited Conditions 53 vs Cdn Inherited Conditions 45
- US Traits 60 vs Cdn Traits 40
- US Drug Response 24 vs Cdn Drug Response 12

According to the press release 23andMe "has made significant investments in infrastructure [near Toronto] to offer significantly reduced shipping rates for Canadian customers".