A new report on the best and cheapest cartridges on sale in Canada has the country’s top-selling ink cartridges ranking dead last among the countries in the world.
“The bottom line is that we’re very behind the rest of the world,” said Brian Dufour, president of the Canadian Association of Ink and Cartridges (CAIC), a trade group representing more than 150 industry groups.
“That’s the reality.
There’s a lot of people buying cartridges for their own personal use, and we’ve got a few things that we haven’t been able to do.”
The report, released Wednesday, shows that in Canada, the top five most popular ink cartridges are: Bic pen, $3.69 per ml; pencil, $2.50 per ml, ink cartridge, $1.80 per ml and refillable ink cartridges.
The cheapest ink cartridges include: $0.99 per ml cartridge, the refillable cartridge; $0,45 per ml ink cartridge; and $0 per ml refillable cartridges.
While those prices fall in line with those of other countries, the CAIC found that the top-performing cartridges are more expensive than the rest.
“It’s really difficult to compare to other countries when you look at the prices.
I think we’re really behind on that front,” said Dufours co-founder David Leduc.
“We’re a little behind on the cost, and the fact that we have such low prices in Canada is really surprising.”
The CAIC’s research found that in the U.S., the top four cartridges are pencil, $4.29 per ml pencil cartridge, ink cartridges and refillables.
The top-ranked pen cartridges include the $2 refillable pen cartridges and the $1 refillable refillable pencil cartridge.
The report found that while the Canadian economy is improving, the country still lags behind the U, U.K., Germany and Australia when it comes to the cost of ink cartridges in Canada.
The CAAC is calling on the government to introduce an incentive for retailers to lower their prices to help lower prices in the industry.
“A lot of the costs of the industry are being paid by the average consumer,” said Leduc, adding that it’s not just about how much ink is used, but how the ink works and how it affects the product.
“There are some companies that are making a lot more money by producing these cartridges at a lower cost than they would be making by selling them directly to consumers.”
“Inks that are not in the highest quality are not going to be used in the most expensive pens,” he said.
Dufoured said the industry needs to work to get ink prices down and get consumers to use ink that is at least as good.
“You have to be really careful about what you’re paying for.
The fact that you’re selling a product that is costing the industry $10 per ml doesn’t necessarily mean that you should be paying that much,” he added.
“If you’re buying a $4 refillable, it’s still $4 per ml.
But if you’re using a $0 cartridge, it may be less expensive.”
The industry group is also calling on Ottawa to require companies to offer more affordable cartridges for the low-end market.
“People are using a lot less ink and the cost is really driving people away from the industry,” he explained.
“Our message to Ottawa is, you need a mandate that will get people to use more expensive cartridges.
That’s what the government should be doing.”
The lowest-priced cartridges are also found in Quebec, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
The lowest priced refillable pens are found in Nova Scotia, Ontario and British Columbia.