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About CANA
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Founded in 1913, the Cremation Association of North America (CANA) is an international 501 (c)(6) trade association of over 3,300 members, composed of funeral homes, cemeteries, crematories, industry suppliers, consultants and students. CANA members believe that cremation is preparation for memorialization.

CANA's mission is to serve as the leading authority on all aspects of cremation. When you register for a CANA certification program, convention, online class or join as a member, you become a participant in a community of cremation experts.

CANA = All Things Cremation®

CANA is governed by a volunteer board of directors and led by a professional staff headquartered in Wheeling, IL. Volunteer and staff leaders regularly engage in strategic planning to review and prioritize the member benefits and programs offered.

The leadership and staff are guided by these values:

  • Integrity
  • Excellence
  • Diversity
  • Openness
  • Engagement
  • Stewardship of the Industry

Until the early 1920's, cremation was the choice of the wealthy and the well-educated. All crematories were located on cemetery property and elaborate columbariums were built for the elaborate urns then being used.

After it was proven, through scientific investigation, that proper in-ground, full body burial was safe, cremation fell out of favor and remained in the 3% to 5% range. It wasn't until the early 1980's that the rate reached double digits and started to increase on the average of 1.5% - 2% annually until the USA national rate exceeded 50% in 2016.

CANA also feels that the word "cremains" should not be used when referring to "human cremated remains." "Cremains" has no real connection with the deceased whereas a loved one's "cremated remains" has a human connection.

CANA members subscribe to the tenets of the Code of Cremation Practice.

CANA Press Releases

Our press releases, news items, and general announcements are available in the News Archive.