In 1916, the First World War was in full swing and Canada was heavily involved in the war effort in many ways. Canadian industry was geared up to produce munitions and other war supplies and a particular challenge was to move these vitally needed goods to the front in Europe. The railways were being stretched to move goods to east coast ports and danger to ocean shipping was also an issue. Car supply, freight claims, and railway tariffs were of particular concern to shippers.
On October 25, 1916, a meeting was held in Toronto, “for the purpose of organizing the “Canadian Traffic League“.
The object of the League shall be to promote a better understanding of transportation matters by the interchange of ideas, the discussion of questions of mutual interest and importance, and the presentation of the results of such conference to the proper parties, thus bringing about better transportation conditions generally.
Today, the Freight Management Association of Canada (FMA), the successor of the Canadian Traffic League, deals not only with rail freight, but with trucking, airfreight, inter-modal, marine and courier services.
With Covid 19 almost in the rearview mirror, the current environment for FMA members is at least as challenging as it was for League members in 1916, but as the first constitution stated, FMA will continue to work to “bring about better transportation conditions generally”.
Our primary role is advocacy on behalf of the buyers of freight transportation and we are “The National Voice of the Shipper” with all levels of government, carrier groups, and with foreign governments and agencies. FMA chairs the Coalition of Rail Shippers, a coalition of industry associations whose member companies represent over 80% of the Canadian revenues of CN and CPR. FMA is the Canadian member of the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF), the world group of shipper associations, and through the GSF is able to stay abreast of international shipper issues. These coalitions and relationships extend FMA’s reach and influence.
Our membership of 50+ companies is the basis of our strength, and to all purchasers of freight transportation, we invite you to strengthen our voice by adding your voice.