To Members of Parliament
House of Commons
Dear Member of Parliament:
The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA) supports
overhauling the Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act, and Bill C-311 is an important first step in modernizing this archaic piece of legislation. However, we are
concerned that the amendment does not go far enough and we urge you to
also exempt wine purchased by restaurants.
Restaurants play an important role in the promotion of Canadian wines to
both local residents and tourists alike. Often it is the restaurant
industry that gives wine drinkers the first opportunity to sample wine
from Canadian wineries. Many vintners work hand in hand with
restaurateurs to create dining experiences, maximizing the use of
Canadian wine and food products. Given the explosion of culinary
tourism and the economic impact in rural communities in particular,
efforts should be taken to reduce road blocks to create an environment
that supports the growth of Canadian products.
Given the nature of many of the wineries in Canada, many have difficulty
supplying large provincial liquor monopolies with the quantities needed
to be listed as a core product. In many instances wineries choose to
focus on sales to restaurateurs or the farm gate. To many wineries,
restaurants are primary customers as well as an affordable means to
market Canadian wines to new customers. However, both restaurants and
wineries are frustrated due to legislation restricting access.
I urge you to take the next step to amend the Act to exempt wine
purchased by restaurants in addition to consumers. Reducing barriers
for the Canadian wine and restaurant industries will help build a
strong partnership that will enhance and promote the economic and
cultural fabric of the nation.
I trust you will give this due consideration.
Executive Vice President, Government Affairs