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35 Canadian Innovations That Changed The World - Part 1

26 May 2017

Frank Mirecki

In 2020, BrantTel is celebrating 38 years in business, and as we move close to Canada Day, we have been reflecting on the important aspects of life. There is a lot we agree on as a team, but there is one overarching truth that we couldn’t escape: Canada is pretty great. We figured: why not spend the next few weeks remembering Canada’s greatness? What better way to bask in our nation's awesomeness, than reflecting on some of the most amazing, simple and world-changing innovations that have come out of our land?

So, for the next five weeks, we are going to highlight 35 Canadian innovations that changed the world--We think you may just be surprised by some of the awesome innovations on this list!

35 Innovations Part 1 - The Home

This week we're going to focus on the home. These are the trinkets, gadgets and household items that you probably didn’t know were born in the great white North. Who knew there was a little bit of Canada in homes all around the world?

McIntosh Apples

When is the last time you spent a few moments appreciating the delicious juiciness of a fresh McIntosh Apple? What would you say if we told you that if it wasn’t for Canadian innovation, this succulent treat might not exist? Yes, yes, we know, apples grow on trees in the wild, but if it wasn’t for Canadian Native John McIntosh in 1811, this versatile fruit might still be stuck in Upper Canada, undiscovered. It's pretty cool that a McIntosh can be eaten or cooked, but even cooler is the fact that a certain technology company named one of their most famous personal computers after this Canadian apple. So the next time you flip open your chrome and glowing MacBook, take some time to admire this simple fruit.

Egg Cartons

There isn’t much worse than accidentally breaking eggs that you just bought. If we agree on that, we should probably send up a collective thank you to British Columbia and newspaper editor Joseph Coyle. In 1911, this innovative Canadian found himself caught in the middle of a fiery egg delivery dispute between a local farmer and a hotel owner. Mr. Coyle decided that the only way to resolve the egg-breaking feud was to find a solution to a much bigger problem: keeping eggs intact in transport. So he took what he knew about paper and created one of the earliest renditions of what we know today as the Egg Carton. So, the next time we open an egg carton and see a cracked egg remember that it used to be much, much worse and, if nothing else, the great farmer-hotel feud of 1911 was resolved peacefully.

Peanut Butter

The first official patent for peanut butter was awarded to Marcellus Gilmore Edson from Montreal in 1884. Marcellus was pretty excited when he roasted some peanuts, ground them into a paste and mixed in a bit of sugar. Sure, peanut butter has evolved since 1884, but just think how sad jelly would be without it's good friend peanut butter! Whether you like it crunchy or smooth, just know you are indulging in a Canadian delicacy every time you spread that gooey peanut butter goodness across a slice of bread.

Milk In A Bag

Who needs a jug when you can have a bag? Canada (especially Ontario and Quebec) and milk bags have been hand in hand since 1967 thanks to the company DuPont. But why? The milk bag isn't just for fun, you see. Besides launching the lesser well known "bag snip" industry, these transparent transport devices happen to store the same amount of milk using less material. After all, we're always doing our best to take care of this great land of ours.

Easy Off Oven Cleaner

Created by Herbert McCool in 1932, Easy-Off finds its origins in Regina. Not only does this tough cleaner do its job on household ovens, it was recently revealed that products like Easy-Off have been used to clean plutonium stains at defunct nuclear sites! Not even nuclear radiation is stopping this powerful Canadian innovation from getting the job done!

Garbage Bag

Harry Wasylyk, Larry Hansen, and Frank Plomp… they might not be household names, but in 1950 these gentlemen gave you a place to put your garbage. Winnipeg and Ontario had to unite to bring together these individuals so that every home could be stench and mess free. The original intent was for the bags to be for industry and they were first sold to Winnipeg General Hospital. Moral of the story: we should probably complain less about taking out the garbage and celebrate Canada for giving us a bag to stick our garbage in at all!

Paint Roller

You may be surprised to read that the identity of the inventor of the paint roller is hotly debated in some circles. Many have different opinions and thoughts on the matter. But facts are facts, and the first documented patent for the paint roller goes to Norman Breakey in 1940. And you guessed it, Breakey was born and raised Canadian. Sadly, competitors were able to adjust the design slightly and out produce the innovative Mr. Breakey. Still, if you are painting a room in your house, you have a Canadian to thank for clean lines and hours saved!

Caulking Gun

Last, but surely not least is the Caulking Gun. Created by Theodore Whitt in 1894 this fellow Canadian adapted the idea of a cake decorator and utilized it to make caulking a whole lot easier!

These innovations are just the tip of the iceberg of all that Canada has brought into the world. Our innovations have made the world over more efficient, delicious, safe and fun!

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Frank Mirecki
26 May 2017

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26 May 2017
35 Canadian Innovations That Changed The World - Part 1

In 2020, BrantTel is celebrating 38 years in business, and as we move close to Canada Day, we have been reflecting on the important aspects of life. There is a lot we agree on as a team, but there is one overarching truth that we couldn’t escape: Canada is pretty great. We figured: why not […]

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