We Are Sunshine

2022 JCTA Annual General Meeting Update

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2022

The Joint Canadian Tanning Association held its Annual General Meeting on Nov 9th this year via Zoom. Members and Non-Members were welcome to connect live. The JCTA continues with its mandates set out in 2006. These mandates continue to give the JCTA direction: Market to Canadians, Educate Governments, Media Relations, Fund Research & Other likeminded groups, and keeping our members informed. The AGM included a Guest Speaker for the first time. Dr. Marc Sorenson presented the “Risks & Benefits of UV & Sun Exposure.”

Dr. Marc Sorenson’s presentation was full of updated research and information. Sorenson started with a little bit of history, how the benefits of sunlight outweigh any risk when you moderately exposure yourself, and how sunlight and supplements are not the same. Vitamin D blood levels could be just an indicator of sunlight deficiency. Not to say Vitamin D is not beneficial, but getting it the natural way with UVB exposure to the skin has added benefits when you include full spectrum light into the mix —  from bone health to sleep to immunomodulation (balancing the immune system) and even cancer and skin cancer. He detailed how melanoma skin cancer rates have increased as sunlight exposure has decreased since 1935. We’re working indoors more than ever before. He showed research used by the World Health Organization (WHO) that sunburning is the major risk factor for both sun and sunbed exposure. He presented a very interesting piece of research from Dr. Hoel just out this year, who was one of the researchers on IARC Report 2006 that the WHO used to move sunbed to a Group 1 carcinogen. Here’s some powerful quotes from the research paper; “Group 1 – For example, sunlight has been found to be a carcinogen because it is capable of causing sunburn and sunburns have been found to be capable of causing melanoma.” , “One study with burn data found no significant increased risk for melanoma for users who did not burn and a 56% increased risk for those who did burn (OR 1.56, 95% CI, 1.13-2.15).” and Dr Hoel concluded: “There was no evidence that the use of artificial UV devices for tanning purposes was in itself a risk factor for melanoma independent of UV burns.”. Now you may want to tell everyone on social media about this but The JCTA strongly recommends that you do not share this information on social media. We need to use this type of information carefully and not make it look like marketing. So let the JCTA get this information out to Canadians and governments.

Some of you may not know about the additional benefits of UVA light outside of a tan. Dr. Weller’s research that has been coming out over the least few years has shown the important of UVA light when it comes to cardiovascular disease (CVD). UVA/UVB help produce Nitric Oxide in your skin which reduces the risk of CVD. He states in an updated research paper that “Furthermore, many health benefits of sun exposure may not simply be replaced by dietary vitamin D. A more balanced approach towards sun and light exposure is now emerging as an important worldwide public health issue.” and ” A suite of bioactive molecules, in addition to vitamin D and NO (Nitric Oxide), is induced by sun exposure, which have various independent and interacting effects on health and well-being.”

The JCTA continues to grow. For the first time, salon membership funds exceeded Industry Advocate Memberships (Suppliers/manufacturers). Part of the reason for the increase in salon membership is the exclusive member insurance program created by BrokerLink (Calgary). The program started in 2020 with input from salons on what they wanted for coverage. As salon numbers grow in the program, the more competitive we have become. This year showed that by the growth of memberships on the salon side. We still need to make sure we are supporting the suppliers here in Canada like Uvalux Tanning & Support, The Tanning Depot, and The Sun Club.

As we all know, the economic situation in Canada is unstable, respiratory illnesses are on the rise and masking mandate are being called for again. We will continue to make sure government do not hit us again like they did the last waves. I believe they have learned their lesson from the previous waves — that shutdowns are not required unless hospitalization and death get out of hand. So far this is not the case according to the numbers. Travel restriction should hopefully be a thing of the past and travel season should increase this year. Every indication is showing this. Inflation should start to slow and interest rates will start to hold. Uncertainty in the marketplace should start to stabilize and that’s when people will open their pocketbooks.

That said, the JCTA will continue to help push clients to your door. Last year’s marketing showed that moving more money to Google continued to work. We’re finding better results by marketing on Google, and more Canadians are going to our consumer site and seeing our message of responsible tanning. We had over 16 million impression which was a 60% increase over the previous year. We had 115,000 website views, and time spent on the website also increased. This means every person going to the website is seeing the closest 3 salon members to them and getting weblinks to salon member websites.

The 2022/2023 marketing campaign will continue with the success of last year. The campaign will include PreTan for Vacation, Sunburn Prevention, Controlled Exposure, Lifestyle and Special Events advertising. The JCTA will continue to teach Canadians the benefits of moderate exposure to sunlight and sunbeds. That the major risk factor is sunburning and should be avoided at all costs. Both the consumer website and Facebook page will continue with these messages. The carousel ad on Facebook continues to get great response and clicks to the consumer website.

If you would like to become a member, check out this 5-minute video on why you should join this professional association. As always, the JCTA is here to help and protect our industry. If you would like more information about the insurance program, let me know at 1.800.915.0367 or I can also have a representative give you a call and do an insurance quote over the phone. We have made it easy, just a few questions which takes 5 minutes over the phone. We do have a person calling about the program as well. It really is coming from the JCTA.

Have a great 2022/23 season!!

Steven Gilroy, JCTA Executive Director and VP of Smart Tan Canada.