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“Made in Quebec”

“Made in Quebec”

**This article has been translated automatically and contains French/Quebec references.**

Our products are made in Quebec! And in this National Day week, I want to address this subject, because it is super important.

First, tell me, is this an important step for you? At what point?

For a company, deciding to manufacture locally is often a CHOICE.

The company can choose to produce here or elsewhere. Sometimes it's easier here, other times it's definitely easier elsewhere (and it's often cheaper elsewhere).

Now, how much does it need to be done 100% in Quebec for you?

Many companies produce here, but have raw materials that come from elsewhere. Just in our case, we'll say it right away: bamboo and cotton don't grow here! So the thread that is used to make our handkerchiefs or our toilet paper rolls comes from Asia (harvested in Central Asia and spun in Turkey). Moreover, they are certified organic, GOTS, OEKO-TEX. They are super cool and well treated wires! But bamboo and cotton don't grow here.

So we have to face the facts: there are many products in Quebec that cannot be 100% local. But after that, if they can be 98%... that's pretty excellent, right!!? Entk, if I had had this in math in high school, it would have been really satisfying!


Speaking of percentages, how many % does it take to say that it's done here?

In fact, to mark packaging as “Product of Canada”, the competition bureau stipulates that the last substantial transformation of the product must take place in Canada AND all or almost all (at least 98%) of the direct costs of production or processing. manufacturing were engaged in Canada.

For a “Made in Canada” or “Made in Canada” indication, the last substantial transformation of the product must take place in Canada AND at least 51% of the direct production or manufacturing costs must have been incurred in Canada.

51% is not much, but it at least allows us to take supplies from elsewhere and manufacture the product here, as long as the supplies cost less than the labor!

In other words, if all our supplies are made elsewhere and we just glue or sew two things together in 30 seconds, I would be surprised if it costs more in labor than in supplies... So even if the last transformation is substantial, you have to make sure you get to 51% for the assembly cost!

Otherwise, you can write something more truthful and precise, like “Designed in Quebec”, but you would not have the right, according to the competition bureau, to write “Made in Quebec”.

Afterwards, anyone can write that, it's a law, like the speed limit of 100 on the highway... if no one checks, no one gets caught. So as a consumer, you have to be vigilant.


So how do we know that a product is really made here, and that the company was not "mistaken" in saying that it is made here, because it does not know the law, or that it would have simply transgressed it voluntarily?

Not easy! But I would say:

We look at the product.

We use our judgment.

We ask; we ask specific questions to companies.

We read the FAQs to see if the company is transparent…

For some time now, we have had a label for Quebec products (like for Aliment du Québec): LES PRODUCTS DU QUÉBEC

It makes things easier! But not all products are approved yet.

And after all that, I come back to my first question: how much do people care about local manufacturing? As a business, the choice of local makes us strong and complicit (yay! Quebec power!), but also extremely vulnerable in the face of other products sold at half the price.


Is manufacturing in Quebec as important an issue when we have less money? Are we ready to invest in our local economy?

Admit that our brains work like this automatically: the first thing we do is compare prices. When you can get pretty much the same thing for less, why not buy the cheaper deal?

Between a pretty sweater for $10 or a nice sweater for $150 but durable and made here, what do we choose? Admit that the $10 sweater is tempting! It’s beautiful too, and it’s “just” a sweater, and we’re on a tight budget.

That's the problem with fast fashion .

At some point, we will have to stop buying 15 sweaters that we will throw away after 2 years, and move towards better chosen clothes made here that will last 15-20 years.

The problem of “things made in Quebec are way too expensive” is a big one.

People are being told to buy local. But that means taking your eyes off your portfolio and starting to look further: where does the product come from, how is it made, by whom? That’s a big change of habit!

We need to re-educate the brains. Explain why it is better to buy local. Justify higher prices.

You should know that if a product manufactured here costs more, it is because we are better paid here and have excellent working conditions. Keeping our money in Quebec keeps the economy going, but it has so many other advantages:

We maintain our salaries and an adequate standard of living.

We keep our businesses on Quebec soil.

We maintain and improve our skills.

We remain autonomous and we are no longer dependent on other countries.

And so, so many other reasons! But the wallet still has a lot of weight in the balance…

Well, who thinks about all that when it comes time to buy ketchup? And who thinks about the environmental impact of products that come from elsewhere too?


That's another matter! Buying here is so much better for the planet!

When you think about it, bringing bottles of water from Europe or parsley flakes from China when it's here is just a NO thing?

The transportation of consumer products has a big environmental impact. Between buying tomatoes that grew here and took a short truck ride to get to the grocery store, versus tomatoes that made a very long trip by boat, train and truck, it is certain that we will prefer the tomatoes that grew here! But then why do we still buy the others?

Because the others are cheaper or because we don't look at the origin?

In our case, for a product that helps reduce our waste, we find it important to limit the transport of finished products. That's why Bateau Bateau has its products sewn 15 minutes away by road, and not 3 weeks away by boat, train and truck!


All this to say that I advocate buying local. Anything you can make here you should buy here. You just have to re-educate yourself a little.

It's crazy though: there are a thousand arguments which justify buying products made in Quebec VS one argument against which demolishes all the others in a fraction of a second = the price.

But yeah, if we have budget problems, maybe we just need to reduce our consumption and go for choices that, yes, will cost us a little more now, but that we won't need to repurchase every time. month year?

By M.eve

I enjoy questioning and informing myself, and write! It's through this blog that I take the time to speak to you transparently about my business or share what I learn or observe regarding environmental topics that concern us all.


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