Mint bringing lighter loonies and toonies to Canadian pockets everywhere

Mint bringing lighter loonies and toonies to Canadian pockets everywhere

Do Canadians stagger under the unbearable weight of the coins in their pockets? Do baristas and bartenders struggle to carry home their tips at the end of the night? If so, the good news is that the Royal Canadian Mint is bringing in lighter-weight loonies and toonies—a move that will save taxpayers $15 million a year by replacing the old coins with new ones that have cheaper metals at their core (steel or zinc are common).

While the switch will modernize Canada’s coins, the vending machine industry isn’t wild about the changes, at least not according to the Toronto Sun.

Canadian Automatic Merchandising Association members “are not happy” about converting machines, vice-president Neil Madden said, “but new software is the cost of doing business…”

A federal government report predicts the software switch will cost $100 to $300 per machine.

Instead of jacking up a $1 soda five or 10 cents, “I anticipate the vending industry will absorb the costs,” said Madden, owner of E.C.S. Coffee in Burlington.

So, the government is saddling businesses with new costs, and the businesses are not passing that on to the consumers. Will wonders never cease?

We will, of course, be watching this vigilantly: surely if cellphones and the Internet can be used to report on law-breaking TTC drivers and confirm election results in developing countries, they can be put to a good cause like this. Surely this needs a Facebook group or a Twitter hashtag. Perhaps #machinegouge?

• Vending machine companies likely to eat cost [Toronto Sun]
• Lighter Loonies, Toonies coming your way [Toronto Sun]