In the past, many people did their shopping without too much consideration for where their products came from or the long-term impact of their shopping habits on their own community or the world.
Many people came to prefer mass-produced items they could get cheaply regardless of where they came from, how they were produced or the fact that they were often poorer quality than homemade alternatives.
That trend is now changing and more people are now realising the value of buying products made in their own country.
In this article, we explain why you should always buy Canadian first over exported goods.
A Healthier Job Market
When you buy Canadian products, you help to create more jobs in Canada. Small Canadian businesses are the biggest combined employers in the country. In 2020, 97.9% of all businesses in Canada were classified as small businesses with one to 99 employees. 1.9% were medium-sized businesses employing between 100 and 500 people and only 0.2% were large businesses with over 500 employees.
In 2021, small businesses employed 10.3 million Canadians, which is 63.8% of the workforce. Medium-sized businesses employed a further 21.1%, meaning that small to medium-sized companies provided employment for 84.9% of Canadians.
Your Money Stays in Canada
When you buy from multinational companies, only some of the money stays in Canada. However, when you buy from Canadian companies selling Canadian products made from local resources, all of your spending stays in Canada through employer wages, taxes, company profits, etc.
Companies can use their profits to employ more people and the government can use the money to provide free universal healthcare, schools, green spaces, infrastructure, roads, public transport, and many other things Canadians benefit from.
Canadian companies are also more likely to give back to the communities through charity work and supporting cultural associations. So when Canadian companies do well, the country and local communities benefit, too.
You Are Protecting The Environment
Because products made in Canada need less transportation, you are reducing your carbon footprint when you buy from Canadian companies. As an example, a product made in the Far East and sold in Toronto will travel thousands of miles compared to a product that is designed, made, and sold in Toronto.
However, not all Canadian companies are equal since not all sell exclusively Canadian products. If you would like to research Canadian companies before shopping to learn more about their products, Made in CA is a useful website where you can browse a range of Canadian companies.
You Know The Employees Get a Fair Wage
When you buy Canadian products, you know that the people involved in the production chain are fairly compensated for their work because all Canadian provinces and territories are committed to minimum wage. Some parts of Canada are doing even better and committing to paying people a livable wage, which is often more than the minimum wage.
You also know that all the employees have been treated fairly and work in sanitary and safe conditions and that the companies are not using child labour.
The Products Meet Canadian Health And Safety Standards
Buying food and other consumer goods made by Canadian companies means that you know they meet the country’s health and safety standards. In Canada, there are many regulations to ensure the health and safety of not just the products, but the production methods, too, from controlling emissions to practices that assure the quality of materials used as well as the end products.
While items sold in Canada, especially food, must meet certain requirements, the consumer does not know the actual conditions the goods were produced in.
You Are Contributing Towards Stronger and Safer Canadian Communities
By spending your money on Canadian products, you contribute towards creating healthier economies and more vibrant communities with stronger infrastructures. Communities that have healthy economies, where more people work, are usually safer and happier and have lower crime rates.
This is reflected in the crime and unemployment statistics across Canada. Cities and towns with high unemployment rates often have higher crime rates. So when you choose Canadian before imported products and help create more jobs in your community, you are also keeping your neighbourhood safer for everyone.
You Are Reducing The Gap Between The Consumer And The Manufacturer
When you buy from large global companies, you have no connection to the people behind the product. It has passed through several hands before it reached you. In contrast, when you buy local products, you often buy directly from the producer or someone who deals directly with the manufacturer.
When the gap between the makers and the buyers is reduced, it is easier to give feedback on the products and actually see the impact of your feedback. This gives you, the consumer, more say in what products you would like to see in shops and therefore a better customer experience.
It Is The Patriotic Thing to Do
While being patriotic hasn’t always been fashionable, and indeed some people frown on the notion, there is nothing unfashionable in supporting your own country’s well-being. There is a wide range of excellent products made in Canada and when you spend your money on them, you are supporting Canada’s economy.
When you shop locally made Canadian products, you are directly touching the lives of others. Shopping Canadian is an investment in the local community and the country as it supports the livelihood of small business owners and their staff. Each sale helps to make a difference and goes a long way in helping the Canadian economy to grow.
There are many reasons to consider buying Canadian products first before opting for imported products. When you buy goods made in Canada, you support a healthy economy and job market. You are also improving your local community and keeping it safer because there is a connection between high employment and low crime rates.
Next time you are deciding between a Canadian and an imported product, think about the difference choosing Canadian will make to the country and your local community.