B.C.'s premier waters down booze in stores expectations, cites safety concerns

WEST KELOWNA, B.C. - B.C. Premier Christy Clark appears to be watering down the idea of alcohol sales in grocery stores.

Clark says she's aware British Columbians are massive supporters of the convenience of beer and wine sales in grocery stores, but the government has public safety concerns.

Speaking at a winery in her West Kelowna riding, Clark says she supports a dozen liquor law changes that benefit the wine industry, including selling wine and other craft-brew products at farmer's markets.

Allowing alcohol sales at grocery stores is one of 70 recommendations in a report submitted last month to the provincial justice minister by John Yap, the parliamentary secretary tasked with the review of liquor laws.

Clark says when it comes to selling beer and wine in grocery stores her government must consider public convenience, safety and the promotion of B.C. products.

Private liquor store operators say selling beer and wine in grocery stores threatens their livelihoods and poses risks for alcohol sales to minors.

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