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Do your favourite brands match up with the rest of Canada’s?




This is an encore episode that aired originally on May 31, 2014.

From top coffee brand to favourite car make, the answers may surprise you.

What’s a morning without a cuppa joe?

Canada and the United States differ quite a bit on their coffee preferences.

Eight out of 10 cups of retail coffee sold in Canada are served by Tim Hortons, which puts as much distance between it and the rest of the pack as Secretariat did at Belmont.

In the States, Starbucks sells the most out-of-home coffee.

Interesting to note that 64% of Canadians are daily coffee drinkers, higher than the 58% rate in the U.S.

As for home-brewed coffee, the #1 brand in Canada is… Maxwell House.

In the States, the #1 brand – by far and away – is Folger’s, with a 15.6% market share. It is the Secretariat of coffees, with the nearest competitor clocking in, far behind, at 10%.

Time for a beer.

One of the biggest advertising categories is the beer business.

Having a beer on a client roster is every advertising agency’s dream – like having a big automotive brand or a piece of the fast food business. They are the flagship accounts.

So what do you think is the #1 beer brand in Canada?

The famous “King of Beers” is Canada’s top choice. The answer is a beer that was created in 1876.

And here’s another hint: The brewery was owned by a family.

If you guessed Molson Canadian, you’d be wrong.

But if you guessed Labatt Blue, you’d… also be wrong.

The number one selling beer in Canada is Budweiser.

Long gone are the days when American beer was thought to be inferior. And when Molson Canadian and Labatt Blue fought tooth and bottle-cap for the number one spot.

In 1995, Labatt was sold to a Belgian Brewery called Interbrew, which has since become part of Anheuser-Busch Inbev.

Ten years later, Molson of Canada merged with Coors of the United States to form Molson Coors Brewing Company.

Those mergers have completely changed the beer landscape in Canada.

While taste is important to beer drinkers, most choose beer based on the brand image.

You see this clearly in focus groups – where die-hard beer drinkers claim their beer is the best tasting beer in the world, then when you bring in a tray of beers with the labels removed  – those same die-hard beer drinkers can’t find their brand.

That’s because, in some categories, we smoke the label and drink the advertising. More often then not, we choose a beer based on the image it projects and how that lines up with our self-image.

And in the case of Budweiser, the Great American lager has been working hard to link itself to hockey in this country, and is winning the race with the help of large media budgets.

In the U.S. by the way, the number one selling beer is Bud Light.

Another big advertising category is pharmaceutical drugs.

You see dozens of pharma ads on TV every night, so what do you think is the #1 selling prescribed medicine in Canada?

Viagra? Cialis?

The answer… is Crestor. It’s a prescribed medication that lowers cholesterol, helping prevent coronary artery diseases, as well as heart attacks, stoke and angina.

This is another category where Canada differs greatly from the United States.

The number one prescribed medication in America… is Abilify. It is an antipsychotic medication used to treat schizophrenia, depression and bi-polar disorder.

Viagra and Cialis, by the way, don’t make the top 10 list in either country.

Onto pop culture.

What do you think the #1 best selling vinyl record was last year? Answer: Jack White’s Blunderbuss.

Number two, by the way, was Abbey Road.

Jack White had the vinyl that topped Abbey Road. (Getty Images) Do you know who the #1 best selling novelist of all time is?

She’s sold over two billion books. According to the New York Times, the answer is Agatha Christie.

The #1 most re-tweeted tweet of all time? “Four More Years,” from President Obama on Nov. 6, 2012.

And which company do you think has the most likes on Facebook? That would be… Coca Cola. As of this writing, it has 74 million likes, dwarfing Wal-Mart at 34 million, and Pepsi at 28 million.

Few purchases in life express your personality more than your car.

Even people who buy plain, non-descript cars, because they reject the notion that a car is an extension of their personalities, are in the end, expressing their personality.

The surprisingly popular Honda Civic. (nitinut380/Shutterstock) Therefore, it’s interesting to see which model is the #1 car in Canada.

If you’re listening to this in your car right now, look around and see if you can tell which is the most predominant model in the traffic around you.

Ford Focus perhaps? Chevy Cruze? Volkswagen Jetta?

Nope. The best selling car in Canada… is the Honda Civic.

Not only is the Honda Civic the best selling car in Canada, it has been the best-selling car in Canada for 15 years.

It’s the Secretariat of automobiles.

For the full list of brands, click or tap on the “Listen” tab to hear the entire Under The Influence episode.

You can also find us on the CBC Radio app or subscribe to our Podcast.

Under The Influence is recorded in the Terstream Mobile Recording studio – a 1969 Airstream trailer that’s been restored and transformed into a studio on wheels. So host Terry O’Reilly can record the show wherever he goes.

Follow the journey on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and search for the hashtag: #Terstream.

(Image Credit: Sidney O’Reilly)


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Tiger-Cats claim victory against the Argos to maintain home record on Labour Day




The Hamilton Tiger-Cats were at their devastating best against the Toronto Argonauts when the two locked horns on Labour Day at the Tim Hortons Field.

Just like with previous Labour Day fixtures, the Ticats produced a stellar performance with Dane Evans throwing two touchdown passes while Frankie Williams scored on a 67-yard punt return as they claimed a 32-19 victory on Monday. With this vital win, the Ticats extended their Labour Day home record to 7-0.

For players and fans of the Tiger-Cats, games on Labour Day are a lot more special and losing is something the Ticats aren’t used to.

“We know the fans are going to be behind us, we know Toronto is going to be chippy, we know it’s going to be sunny; we know it’s going to be windy. Everything that happened (Monday) we prepared for. There is something extremely special about Tim Hortons Field on Labour Day . . . you can feel it in the air, I can’t put it into words,” said Evans.

After the COVID-19 induced hiatus, the CFL is back in full action and fans can now bet on their favourite teams and just like with online slots Canada, real money can be won. Hamilton (2-2) recorded its second straight win to move into a tie atop the CFL East Division standings with Montreal Alouettes (2-2). Also, the Ticats lead the overall Labour Day series with Toronto 36-13-1.

In the sun-drenched gathering of 15,000—the maximum allowed under Ontario government COVID-19 protocols—the fans loved every minute of this feisty game. After all, this was the Ticats first home game in 659 days, since their 36-16 East Division final win over Edmonton in November 2019.

The contest between the Ticats and Argos was certainly not bereft of emotions, typical of a Labour Day fixture, as it ended with an on-field melee. But the Argos often found themselves on the wrong end of the decisions with several penalty calls and most of the game’s explosive plays.

Hamilton quarterback Evans completed 21-of-29 passing for 248 yards and the two touchdowns while Toronto’s make-shift quarterback Arbuckle completed 18-of-32 attempts for 207 yards. Arbuckle also made a touchdown and two interceptions before eventually being substituted by McLeod Bethel-Thompson.

Bethel-Thompson made an eight-yard TD pass to wide receiver Eric Rogers late in the final quarter of the game.

“They got after us a bit . . . we didn’t block, or pass protect well,” said Ryan Dinwiddie, rookie head coach of the Argos in a post-match interview. “They just kicked our butts; we’ve got to come back and be a better team next week.”

The Labour Day contest was the first of four fixtures this year between Toronto and Hamilton. The two teams would face off again on Friday at BMO Field. Afterwards, the Tim Hortons Field will play host to the Argonauts again on Oct. 11 with the regular-season finale scheduled for Nov. 12 in Toronto.

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Roughriders looking to bounce back after Labor Day defeat




In what an unusual feeling for the Saskatchewan Roughriders, they would now need to dust themselves up after a 23-8 loss to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in what was a Labor Day Classic showdown in front of a full capacity crowd at Mosaic stadium.

Craig Dickenson, head coach of the Riders, witnessed his team with an unbeaten record get utterly dominated by a more superior team from Winnipeg. Now, he has got a lot of work on his hands getting his team back to winning ways as they visit the Banjo Bowl next.

“We’re going to see what we’re made of now…the jury’s out,” said Dickenson.

Dan Clark, who played centre for the Riders expressed his disappointment in losing what was “the biggest game of the year”.

 “If you lose every other game, you don’t want to lose that one. We’ve just got to take the next step,” said Clark in a report. “There are 12 steps to the Grey Cup left and it’s just about taking that next step and focusing on what Saturday will bring.”

With their first defeat to Winnipeg, the Riders (3-1) now rank second place in the CFL’s West Division, trailing the Bombers by one victory (4-1). However, the Riders will have the chance to even the season series during their trip to Winnipeg this Saturday. With the CFL heating up, fans can now enjoy online sports betting Canada as they look forward to their team’s victory.

The Rider’s offensive line will once again have a busy time dealing with the Blue Bombers’ defence.

Quarterback Cody Fajardo, who played one of the best games of his career two weeks earlier, had quite a stinker against the Bombers in the Labour Day Classic—which is the most anticipated game for Rider fans.

Fajardo had a 59 per cent completion percentage which wasn’t quite indicative of what the actual figure was considering he was at 50 per cent before going on a late drive in the final quarter with the Bombers already becoming laid back just to protect the win.

Fajardo also registered a personal worst when he threw three interceptions, but in all fairness, he was always swarmed by the Bomber’s defence.

While Fajardo has claimed responsibility for the loss and letting his teammates down, many would be curious to see how the team fares in their next game and with less than a week of preparation.

Dickenson is confident that his team would improve during their rematch in the 17th edition of the Banjo Bowl in Winnipeg. The only challenge now would be the loss of home advantage and dealing with the noisy home crowd, he added.

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Canadian report reveals spike in food-related litter during pandemic




TORONTO — Restaurants’ inability to offer their usual dine-in service during much of 2020 may explain why an unusually high amount of food-related litter was found across the country, a new report says.

The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup (GCSC) is an annual program in which volunteers are encouraged to clean up green spaces and other natural areas.

Last year, single-use food and beverage containers made up 26.6 per cent of waste collected through the program – nearly twice as high a percentage as in 2019, before the pandemic.

“We suspect the change may be one of the many implications of COVID-19, including more people ordering restaurant takeaway and consuming more individually packaged foods,” GCSC spokesperson Julia Wakeling said in a press release.

While food- and beverage-related litter accounted for a greater percentage of waste uncovered by GCSC than in the past, it wasn’t the single largest category of items picked up through the program last year.

That dubious honour goes to cigarette butts and other smoking-related paraphernalia, which comprised nearly 29 per cent of all items collected. There were more than 83,000 cigarette butts among the 42,000 kilograms of waste found and clean up last year.

So-called “tiny trash” – little pieces of plastic and foam – also accounted for a sizeable share of the waste, making up 26.8 per cent of the total haul.

In addition to smoking-related items and tiny trash, the main pieces of litter removed by GCSC volunteers last year included nearly 22,000 food wrappers, more than 17,500 pieces of paper, more than 13,000 bottle caps and more than 10,000 beverage cans.

Discarded face masks and other forms of personal protective equipment were also detected and cleaned up, although not tallied in their own category.  PPE waste has been repeatedly cited as a concern by environmental advocates during the pandemic; a robin in Chilliwack, B.C. is the earliest known example of an animal that died due to coronavirus-related litter.

The GCSC is an annual program organized by Ocean Wise and the World Wildlife Fund Canada. Its operations were disrupted by the pandemic as well; only 15,000 volunteers took part in the program last year, versus 85,000 in 2019, due to delays and public health restrictions making large group clean-ups impossible.

Still, there was GCSC participation from every province and the Northwest Territories in 2020. Nearly half of the volunteers who took part were based in B.C., where the program began in 1994.

Data from past GCSC reports was used as part of the research backing Canada’s ban on certain single-use plastic items, which is scheduled to take effect by the end of 2021.

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