VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – You probably assumed that you would be picking up BC wine with your groceries two-thirds of a year after the BC government announced they were changing liquor laws to allow it.
Behind the scenes, lobbying could stop that dream from ever coming true.
Jeff Guignard with their lobby group ABLE says they’ve been meeting with municipalities to get them to include the grocery store model in bylaws that don’t allow liquor stores within 1 kilometer of each other.
Private liquor stores don’t like the idea of being next to a grocery store which is selling a similar product.
“The new wine on shelves licences coming into grocery stores they are curiously exempt from that rule, so we’ve been asking local governments to protect their local small businesses,” says Guignard. “So with the introduction of grocery stores it has a huge destabilization in it, where you could have a grocery store that’s in the same mall or across the parking lot from a liquor store that moved in because of the existing rules.”
It’s rare to find a grocery store without a liquor store nearby, and Guignard admits we won’t really see wine at grocery stores if his group is successful.