REGINA, May 17, 2013 /CNW/ – The further modernization of Saskatchewan’s liquor regulations implemented this week is welcome news to the province’s $2-billion restaurant sector. Saskatchewan’s antiquated liquor regulatory regime has been a thorn in the side of licensed restaurants, bars and caterers for many years.

“These changes show progress in addressing concerns we have raised on behalf of our members for some time now,” says Dwayne Marling, Manitoba-Saskatchewan Vice-President of the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA). “The government is showing that it is listening to our feedback and suggestions from last year’s consultations.”

Reductions in red tape and reporting requirements will benefit all licensees. However, a wholesale rewrite of the province’s liquor laws is long overdue and would significantly improve the functioning of both SLGA and those it regulates.

“We appreciate the government’s commitment, and particularly Minister Harpauer’s, to improve Saskatchewan’s liquor regulatory regime,” says Marling. “We share its belief that modern, simplified, streamlined and realistic liquor laws will benefit all residents of Saskatchewan. We urge government to seriously consider a ground-up rewrite of the legislation and regulations to modernize them even more effectively.”

As Saskatchewan’s fourth-largest private-sector employer, the restaurant industry directly employs more than 32,000 people at over 2,100 establishments. Twenty-two per cent of Canadians were first employed by the restaurant industry, making it the number one source of first jobs.

CRFA is one of Canada’s largest business associations, with more than 30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. Canada’s restaurant industry generates $65 billion annually in economic activity and employs more than 1.1 million people in communities across the country.

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