May 3, 2016
VANCOUVER, BC – BC Restaurant Talks launched yesterday at Granville Island Brewing. 48 industry insiders gathered to hear Douglas Scott, Assistant Deputy Minister Liquor Control and Licensing Branch, Ministry of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction, address the changing landscape of BC Liquor Regulations.
“The biggest question on the minds of attendees were around incentive legislation and hospitality pricing for restaurants,” said BCRFA president and CEO Ian Tostenson. “For many operators, the two are very much tied together. If restaurants were able to purchase products at a discount, then incentives (though currently illegal) would be less of an issue for operators.”
“We were pleased that Mr. Scott is promising a review of hospitality pricing. Although the timeline was not guaranteed, it was declared a priority issue – and that is important for our members”, said BCRFA chairperson Bob Parrotta, who came over from Victoria to attend. “We are also relieved to see Doug’s team is being realistic about what is happening in the industry and trying to find timely solutions.” Other issues presented included changes to the Food Primary license category and liquor sales in grocery outlets – both the local on the shelves model and the store in store international model. Attendees were pleased to hear that craft beer is being considered for the local on the shelves store model.
Ian Tostenson opened the session, acknowledging the presence of many decision makers in the room. “Our main goal around creating this new series was to get operators together to talk about key issues – and, through the forum, work together as an industry to find solutions to today’s demanding business climate.”
These hard hitting, power sessions are targeted to be 75 minutes in length. The next session will be held Monday June 6th and will focus on Labour Shortage. Stay tuned to the website for details about the session bcrestauranttalks.ca.