June 08, 2016 - 10:30 AM
KAMLOOPS - A Salmon Arm liquor store has threatened to not stock wine from Kamloops area wineries due to the ongoing debate around allowing grocery stores to stock wine.
In an email sent June 3, Hideaway Liquor Store told Harper’s Trail Winery and Monte Creek Winery Ranch it was removing their wines from the store’s shelves due to their support of wine on the shelves of a Save-On-Food in Kamloops.
In the email, liquor store manager Pat Brede says the wineries’ aren’t supporting private liquor stores because they’re pushing for the Sahali Save-On-Foods to be allowed to sell wine. He also asks the wineries to arrange pick-up and credit for the wine already at the store.
“Given your wineries active stance taken against private liquor stores we have decided to pull your products from our shelves,” Brede writes in the email. “This is a clear conflict of interest to your current private retailers.”
Monte Creek winery spokesperson Ashley Demedeiros says that the issue has already been fixed for Monte Creek, with the store still stocking their wine. She says they had resolved the issue before the email was forwarded to media by the B.C. Wine Institute earlier this week.
However, Vicki Collett, co-owner of Harper’s Trail, says they haven’t received any response since replying to the email.
“Really, at the end of the day, when someone sends an email with no opportunity to respond, to me there’s no options,” she says. “Can this come to a resolution? I don’t know, I’m leaving that up to them since it was their choice.”
Collett says she would have preferred to discuss the issue by phone, but wasn't given the chance. She adds Harper’s Trail won’t be sending anyone to collect the wine or crediting the current stock.
No other liquor stores have contacted Harper’s Trail about the winery’s efforts, and Collett says it’s business as usual at the winery right now.
The petition Brede is unhappy with was started by Collett two weeks ago after the city turned down the application by Save-on-Foods mid-May. Collett says she’s happy with the public support and has submitted it to the city for consideration.
When the liquor store was contacted about the email a manager declined comment and hung up.
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