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The Postal Code Conversion File (PCCF) is a digital file which provides a correspondence between the Canada Post Corporation (CPC) six-character postal code and Statistics Canada’s standard geographic areas for which census data and other statistics are produced. Through the link between postal codes and standard geographic areas, the PCCF permits the integration of data from various sources.
The file provides records by Postal Code, indicating the standard Census geographies that overlap with the postal code. The smallest geographic unit for which correspondence is provided for a postal code is the Dissemination Area. The Single Link Indicator (SLI) indicates whether the DA is the "best match" for the postal code (SLI = 1).
The September 2022 version of the PCCF is built using 2021 Census geographies. The CDP will be acquiring quarterly updates of the PCCF for the next 12 months.
As of the March 2022 release, the PCCF is significantly different from previous releases in that it has been developed using a new geocoding application in order to improve the accuracy of the product. Previous versions of the PCCF added records cumulatively, with any new record added to the collection of previous records. resulting in many instances of multiple records for a single postal code. "New" records in some cases may not have been significantly different from previous records. The new geocoding application geocodes all records from scratch for each release, using the latest information to get the most accurate position for a postal code. Previous versions had about 80% of all records geocoded at the block-face level (as opposed to the Dissemination Block, Dissemination Area or Census Subdivision). The current version has about 94% of all records geocoded at the block-face level. Besides greater accuracy, the new geocoding application provides greater coverage of Canada and more unique postal codes (the new version includes about 300 more Census Subdivisions), with fewer total records.
Even with these improvements, a small percentage of postal codes, mostly in rural areas, may be missing or attributed to the wrong dissemination area. Canada Post is continually working to improve this product. Please notify the CDP team (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you are aware of any errors or omissions in the PCCF.