Shortly after the commencement of World War Two, rationing was introduced in Canada (on January 24, 1942), to limit the use of imported food and to free up supplies for the military and their allies. The government introduced rationing because certain things were in short supply, and to ensure that everyone got their fair share.
Each household filled out an application and ration books were mailed out on Monday 31 August 1942. Every family member was issued a ration book. Six different series of books were issued, however, only book one had serial numbers printed on them. Subsequent books had the same serial number, but handwritten.
Each book contained coupons for tea, coffee, and sugar, along with spares in the event that other products would be rationed. Butter was added to the list of rationed items in December.
The last Canadian ration book was issued in September 1946, with rationing formally concluding in 1947.
Below is a list of the available surnames in our collection of Canadian ration books. Click on the surname to see a listing of matching ration book images.
We're finding it quite difficult to locate Canadian ration books. If you have some books that you would like to share with other researchers, send us a note and we'll be glad to include your records in the search.