City council to ponder wine sales in Penticton grocery stores once again - InfoNews

Current Conditions

Partly Cloudy
4.3°C

City council to ponder wine sales in Penticton grocery stores once again

Image Credit: Shutterstock
March 07, 2016 - 2:30 PM

PENTICTON - It looks like Penticton city councillors will have quite a bit to discuss at tonight’s regular meeting as the contentious and complicated issue of wine sales in grocery stores is back.

City staff will be asking council to reconsider a motion it made at the Feb. 15 meeting of council. Council voted to amend the a zoning bylaw to limit the sale of wine in grocery stores to 100 per cent B.C. wine and institute a rule restricting the location of a liquor retail store within one kilometre of another outlet.

The original decision stemmed from information council had received over the past year from the BC Private Liquor Store Association, a local consortium of private liquor store owners, micro breweries and local wineries, the Overwaitea Food Group and a group called the Responsible Liquor Alliance, some of which spoke against the prospect of allowing  wine to be sold in grocery stores.

A staff report recommends against adopting the one kilometre rule saying it would run counter to the convenience factor the province intended to create with the new rules. None of the grocery stores that meet the province's requirements to sell wine would be able to because of the city's rule.

The report also notes because of B.C.’s small stature as a wine market, the possibility of a trade challenge would be unlikely were only B.C. wines to be sold in grocery stores.

Staff point to a letter from the B.C. Wine Institute dated Sept. 8, 2015 to council saying the one kilometre rule would undermine the work done by the province and wine institute. Additionally, if council chose to impose a one kilometre limit, Penticton wineries would be left in the position of marketing their wine to other communities, without the option of selling to grocery stores in their own community.

On the othe side of the coin, small and medium-sized wineries in the Penticton area feel they can't survive without council’s restriction. They say jobs will be put at risk.

“The one kilometre separation rule will allow our multiple retail sales channels to remain healthy. Grocery stores are not providing us guaranteed access to their shelves like VQA stores have provided and this guaranteed access is critical,” Rob Ingram of Terra Bella Wineries says in a media release. He says South Okanagan wineries are confused by staff's about face on the one kilometre rule.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad at sarstad@infonews.ca or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
InfoTel News Ltd

  • Popular kamloops News
  • Comments
  • UPDATE: More snow on the way for Coquihalla Highway
    After a dump of snow on the Coquihalla Highway overnight, the heavy snowfall is expected to resume tonight. Drivers heading to and from the Lower Mainland will get a break today, Jan. 20, wi
  • Rise in duty-free allowance could cost hundreds of thousands of jobs: Retail Council
    CALGARY - Canada's retail industry is warning that raising the duty-free allowance for cross-border shipments could lead to hundreds of thousands of job losses and cut billions of dollars from
  • TRENDING NOW: Dog loses it while breaking ice
    %%NoDefaultImage%% This dog gets so excited when the ice on a shallow, frozen creek starts breaking underneath him. The shattering ice proves to be just too much for this loveable pup.
  • UPDATE: Missing Vernon woman found
    UPDATE: 9:26 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018 VERNON - RCMP says a missing 39-year-old Vernon woman reported missing yesterday, Jan. 19, has been located and she is safe and sound. All p
  • Autopsy: Tom Petty died of accidental drug overdose
    NEW YORK - Tom Petty died last year because of an accidental drug overdose that his family said occurred on the same day he found out his hip was broken after performing dozens of shows with a les
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile