The Consumer Protection Association of Canada is launching a national campaign aimed at convincing consumers to invest in the industry.
The association is calling on the public to contact the industry, lobby their local governments and companies, and sign up for a membership card.
“Consumer demand for the industry is very high, but they have very little protection,” said CPA Canada president Paul Fassbender.
“This campaign is to try and encourage a little bit of awareness of the industry and a little more support for it.”
CPA is calling for the public’s participation in the campaign by calling on its members to call a toll-free number on their cell phones, emailing the organization at [email protected], and posting pictures of their purchases on its Facebook page.
It’s not the first time CPA has partnered with the industry to promote its product.
The group also announced last month that it is launching its own campaign for the truck industry.
Fassbert says the association is hoping to tap into the fact that consumers are concerned about the safety of the truck, particularly the smaller, older trucks.
“I think what we have seen with our consumer advocacy is that a lot of consumers feel like the industry has been in their corner,” he said.
The CPA wants the public on board to make a big impact on the industry by making it a top priority, and is encouraging Canadians to visit the company’s website, CPA.ca.
“We’re going to make it very clear that we’re there for you and that we care about you, that we will support you,” said Fassbinder.
“It’s going to be very important to get the public involved and the consumer will be very happy with what they’re seeing.”
The group will also host a forum at the Canada Goose show in Edmonton, where it will highlight the importance of the trade.
Farsi speaker, a truck driver in her early 40s, is one of the main drivers behind the industry’s success.
“The industry has always been about bringing people together, and now that’s really happening,” said Farasia, a resident of St. Albert.
“Every year I think I go through five or six people in my truck that I haven’t seen in 10 years.
It really feels like the truck is getting better.”
Farasias comments echo those of many truckers in her community.
“There’s more and more people coming to see the trucks,” she said.
“Everybody has to drive a truck now.
I think the truck has really caught up.”
Farais said she’s pleased with the level of attention the industry receives.
“What we’ve seen is so far, so good,” she added.
“They’re bringing it back to its roots.
We’re just trying to bring it back back to where it was before the crash.”
CPDC has also partnered with industry members to create the Canada Truck Safety Initiative.
“To us, the trucking industry is an industry that has an enormous impact on Canada,” said Mark McQueen, president of CPDCo.
“That’s why we’re making sure that it’s recognized, that it gets recognized and we’re working hard to make sure that they are given the support that they need.”
The industry is hoping the initiative will help it get more people to drive.
“If the truck drivers have the support and the support of the trucks that are making these decisions, they will do it,” McQueen said.
Faced with the challenges of a shrinking industry, trucking is an attractive option for trucking companies that have struggled in the past.
In addition to the growing market for smaller trucks, many trucking firms are also looking to expand to new markets, including China and India.
“When you have the ability to get people to do these tasks, it really opens up a lot more possibilities for you to expand into new markets,” McQuarries colleague and CEO at Dentsu, Ken McRae, said.
Dentsus has been testing a new fleet of diesel trucks, dubbed the Dentsun Ego, for two years, in partnership with China-based Jiaotong Motor Co. The company is targeting a 2020 market, with the goal of operating a fleet of 25 trucks a year, and with a market cap of $4 billion.
While the company has invested heavily in technology, it is still in the early stages of the project.
McRes said the technology and infrastructure in place is ready to support a fleet, but that they’ll need a lot from the public in order to start to grow.
“You can’t just build something that’s just going to work out and then say, ‘Oh well, we’re not going to do it,'” McRee said.
McQueen and McQueen are confident the company can begin to ramp up production within the next few years, although the company will need to ramp production in order for the fleet to be viable.