CRFA applauds 70+ changes to modernize liquor regulation

REGINA, Nov. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority (SLGA) Minister Donna Harpauer announced more than 70 changes to the liquor regulatory regime that address several long-standing concerns of the province's $1.9-billion restaurant sector.

"This announcement is a great step in the right direction," said Dwayne Marling, Manitoba-Saskatchewan Vice President for the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA). "We have long called for modernizing Saskatchewan's antiquated liquor system, and are pleased government heeded the advice of the province's licensed restaurateurs."

Positive changes include:

  • lengthening permit duration to three years;
  • allowing restaurants to operate off-sales in the same way as other licensees;
  • standardizing opening hours; and
  • reducing red tape.

Earlier this year, CRFA explained the need to modernize Saskatchewan's liquor control system to both the Cabinet's red tape reduction committee and Minister Harpauer - and government has acted on nearly all concerns we presented.

"Changes to Saskatchewan's liquor system are long overdue and we thank the government for the changes announced today," said Marling. "We look forward to working with government and SLGA in rolling these changes out as soon as possible for our patrons. We will continue to pursue constructive dialogue with Minister Harpauer about other steps that can be taken to modernize the system."

The restaurant and foodservices industry directly employs 32,600 people, making it one of the top four private-sector employers in Saskatchewan. More than half of these employees are young people under the age of 25.

CRFA is one of Canada's largest business associations, with more than 30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. Canada's $65-billion restaurant industry employs more than 1.1 million people in communities across the country.

SOURCE: Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association

For further information:

Dwayne Marling, 877-926-8557, cell. 204-688-8557 or dmarling@crfa.ca; Prasanthi Vasanthakumar, 1-800-387-5649, ext. 4254 or pvasanthakumar@crfa.ca