Toyotetsu Plant Tour (TTCA), Simcoe, Ontario, November 23, 2015

Rotary Tour
Seated left to right, Rotarian Albert Madill, President Norifumi Taniguchi, Toyotetsu Canada Inc. (TTCA), President Tim Fitzgerald, The Rotary Club Of Simcoe


Photographs provided by: Masayuki (Masa) Miyake, Toyotetsu Canada Inc. (TTCA)
Story by: C. Richard Campbell
Too often we read in the newspaper that good Canadian manufacturing jobs are being exported to Asia. Never to return. The Toyotetsu Canada Inc. plant in Simcoe, Ontario is an example of a reverse trend. It is Japanese investment in Ontario manufacturing that has created over 500 jobs in Norfolk County. Norfolk County in southwestern Ontario has a robust and diversified agricultural industry with a healthy service sector. But jobs for our young people in manufacturing are not plentiful and most high school graduates move to the jobs in the larger urban areas. And here is another reverse trend as the young people leave, older "retiring" people are moving into such places as Port Dover.
So it was refreshing to tour the plant and see the mix of young men and women working amidst the huge stamping machines, computers and the robots welding away with the occasional burst of sparks. Their labour, technical skills, commitment to innovation and safety have resulted in a number of awards for quality. This has resulted in part with the plant supplying Toyota with parts for its luxury car, the Lexus.
The plant tour was conducted and organized by our own Andy Elkin. Andy is a knowledgeable guide and spokesperson. Why there was even some humour on display!  General Manager Edward Bilopavlovic also accompanied us on our tour and exhibited patience answering our questions and making sure we didn't step were we shouldn't. Our "off site" tours of business and industries in Norfolk County help Rotarians understand the community that they are serving. The folks at Toyotetsu Canada Inc. (TTCA) in Simcoe are hard-working, friendly and courteous. They are also surviving and growing in a highly competitive industry.
Plant Tour
The Presidential shaking of hands.