600600p6489EDNmain405Jean and Lapointe(Aug. 26/14) Agriculture Minister Pierre Paradis may introduce a bill this fall that allows bring-your-own-wine (BYOW) restaurants to also sell Quebec wines. Restaurants Canada is concerned by this proposal, because it contradicts the existing two-permit system, where restaurants can either sell wine or allow customers to bring their own wine, but not do both. It also makes it difficult to enforce the rule that restaurants only sell stamped bottles (to indicate special taxes paid to SAQ), as customers bringing their own wine will have unstamped bottles.

Restaurants Canada is pushing government to settle more fundamental alcohol issues for our members – such as permits required, bottle stamping and volume rebates – before moving ahead with Minister Paradis’s proposal. We have long-argued against bottle stamping due to the flimsy nature of stamps. We also support the promotion of Quebec wines, but through the Ontario model where restaurateurs get rebates for putting local wines on the menu.

We have written to department officials outlining our concerns. We also met with the assistant chief of staff of the Security Minister, Martin Lapointe, to further discuss these issues.

Top photo: Restaurants Canada’s Jean Lefebvre (left) with Mr. Lapointe.

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