July 14, 2020

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues, 

Here’s what you’ll find inside today’s update:

  • Recap of last week’s updates
  • Important: how to access wholesale pricing on July 20
  • Hospitality Product Catalogue: Training Video and Sample Hospitality Price List
  • Policy Deadlines Extended: Delivery of packaged liquor and liquor retail hours
  • New Member Discount: Wines of BC Explorer
  • Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy extended to December
  • New wine producing region recognized on Vancouver Island
  • Security verification period extended for retail cannabis workers
  • Research and insights by Destination BC: BC Public Perceptions Report

Find all past updates from ABLE BC here.

As always, if you have any additional questions or need to reach us you can email: jeff@ablebc.ca or danielle@ablebc.ca.

Recap of last week’s updates

Here’s what you may have missed from ABLE BC last week:

Update on July 7:

  • Free Webinar Tomorrow: Wines of BC Explorer for ABLE BC Members
  • Reminder: register for LDB Hospitality Product Catalogue by July 20
  • LDB Wholesale Update: returns due to permanent business closure
  • Vancouver Park Board delays decision on allowing liquor at select parks
  • Best Practices: handling empty returns
  • Best Practices: pool tables
  • WorkSafeBC: Prevention Services data for COVID-19
  • FAQ: serving American customers

Update on July 9:

  • Correction: BC Liquor Stores not accepting empties
  • Register for Hospitality Product Catalogue by July 20 to access wholesale pricing
  • Sign-up for Wines of BC Explorer: drive customers to your liquor store
  • BC Provincial State of Emergency Extended 
  • BC’s Small Businesses and COVID-19 Virtual Townhall: July 13
  • Find PPE for your business 
  • COVID-19 Support Service

Find all past updates from ABLE BC here.

Important: how to access wholesale pricing on July 20

Attention: Pubs, Bars, and Restaurants

Beginning Monday, you’ll be able to purchase liquor at wholesale price. You will not know the wholesale price if you don’t register for a Hospitality Product Catalogue account before July 20th.

Given the volume of registrations in a short period of time the processing time to activate accounts is expected to take up to 10 to 15 days.
Wholesale prices will NOT be visible in BC Liquor Stores. Only retail prices will continue to be posted on BCLS shelves and the BCLS website. 

How to register:

  1. Complete a registration form: download it HERE
  2. Email your completed registration form to the LDB Wholesale Customer Centre: wholesalehelp@bcldb.com

What do I need to register for an account?

  • Hospitality licensee ID number
  • Unique email address

Note: Hospitality customers with Web Store accounts will have automatic access to wholesale prices via Web Store on July 20th and do not need to register for any additional accounts.

Register for your account now.

What is the Hospitality Product Catalogue? The Hospitality Product Catalogue is your access to wholesale pricing. It is designed for pubs, bars, and restaurants purchasing from the Wholesale Customer Centre and BC Liquor Stores.

The catalogue provides product search capabilities and features the SKU, product name, price, case configuration, alcohol content, and the representing agent plus additional product attributes.

Where can I learn more? 

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact ABLE BC: 
info@ablebc.ca or 604-688-5560.

Hospitality Product Catalogue: Training Video and Sample Hospitality Price List

As of July 20, pubs, bars, and restaurants will be able to purchase liquor at wholesale price. 

The LDB is implementing two phases of system changes to put this into effect: 

The first phase of the systems changes will be delivered by July 20, when hospitality customers will be able to buy liquor at wholesale prices.

From July 20 through to September 1, a searchable hospitality price list (MS Excel format) will be posted to the Hospitality Product Catalogue as an interim measure to assist hospitality customers with their purchasing decisions until the Catalogue resumes its full functionality on September 1, 2020. 

The second phase will be completed by September 1, 2020 and will provide hospitality customers access to the wholesale price list through the fully functioning Hospitality Product Catalogue. 

Sample Price List and Training Video:

To help hospitality customers become familiar with the hospitality price list, a sample hospitality price list with NO pricing information as well as a training video and FAQs are now available in the Hospitality Product Catalogue. 

Hospitality licensees with active Hospitality Product Catalogue accounts can log into their accounts to view the training video and become familiar with the sample hospitality price list. 

For more information, please read this update from LDB Wholesale

If you haven’t signed up for a Hospitality Product Catalogue account, please do so immediately.

Policy Deadlines Extended: Delivery of packaged liquor and liquor retail hours

Yesterday, we were happy to announce the provincial government is extending the following policies

  • Extended from July 15 to August 31, 2020: Temporary extension of liquor retail hours of service for licensee retail stores, wine stores, special wine stores, and liquor manufacturers with on-site store endorsements.

Both the policies and extensions were among of series of recommendations from the Business Technical Advisory Panel to help support BC’s struggling hospitality businesses during the pandemic.

Read more: 

New Member Discount: Wines of BC Explorer

ABLE BC is pleased to announce a new member discount: save 25% on a subscription for Wines of BC Explorer.

What is Wines of BC Explorer

An app launched by TasteAdvisor and the BC Wine Institute:

  • Connects consumers with wines, wineries, and experiences that match their preferences
  • Personalized tool for exploring BC wine country
  • Easy channel to purchasing at retail locations

What does the app do? 

Wines of BC Explorer takes the guesswork out of buying wine. The app matches an individual’s personal taste preferences to a database of 100% BC wines, resulting in an easy-to-navigate personalized wine list.

How can liquor stores get involved? 

Retailers can sign-up for a Wines of BC Explorer subscription and list their store in the app. Your subscription includes:

  • A profile of your retail location in the Wines of BC Explorer
  • A listing of all BC wines available at your retail location
  • Your location recommended as an available retailer for each wine in your listing
  • Technical support to maximize your listing

The cost for a subscription is $20 per month or $240 per year. ABLE BC members receive the special price of: $15 per month or $180 per year.

For more information, please click here

By purchasing a retailer listing, your inventory will be exposed to thousands of wine consumers who are actively looking to buy those wines.

To sign-up please contact:
Darcen Esau 778-985-8953 | darcen@tasteadvisor.co

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact:
Danielle Leroux 604-688-5560 | danielle@ablebc.ca

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy extended to December

Yesterday, Prime Minister Trudeau said the federal government is extending the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy program to December of this year.

The program covers 75 per cent of wages, up to a weekly maximum of $847, for workers at eligible companies and non-profits affected by the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Prime Minister did not say how the government may reshape the eligibility rules for the program.

As you may recall, as part of the federal government’s recent consultation process on the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy program, ABLE BC, TIABC, BCHA, and Restaurants Canada provided a joint submission.

Download our letter here.

Our four associations provided a number of recommendations for government to consider to enable more business and individuals to qualify for CEWS including:

  • Further extending the CEWS while COVID-19 restrictions remain in place or until businesses get close to reaching their pre-COVID sales
  • Introduce a smooth scaling of the program that allows businesses to access a proportionately reduced portion of the subsidy as their business revenues grow 
  • Expand eligibility to CEWS to include additional common corporate structures not currently eligible 

Read more about our recommendations here.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau spent weeks leading up to the July 8 fiscal update getting input from businesses, labour groups and other stakeholders on how to reshape the wage subsidy program.

The government has hinted at changes to revenue-reduction thresholds that may discourage companies from growing.

We will share more details on the CEWS as soon as they become available.

New wine producing region recognized on Vancouver Island

British Columbians shopping for a bottle of BC wine will see a new area recognized for their grape-growing and winemaking on the label – the Cowichan Valley.

The Cowichan Valley is being recognized as a new sub-geographical indication (sub-GI), an official and protected term under BC law used to help consumers identify BC wines’ origins. 

The Cowichan Valley sub-GI is roughly defined as the area between the Cowichan watershed, the eastern coastline from Mill Bay to Maple Bay and the western area of Cowichan Lake.

Defining geographic zones on wine labels connects consumers with the unique geographic area the grapes are grown and the wine is made in and increases exposure to the region for both wine and tourism businesses.

Read more about this and other geographical indications here.

Security verification period extended for retail cannabis workers

The Province has amended worker qualification regulations for non-medical cannabis workers to extend their security verification period from two to five years.

Until now, all cannabis workers in non-medical cannabis stores were required to renew their security verification every two years. Security screening and re-screening requirements were implemented as a measure to keep organized crime out of the legal, non-medical cannabis market.

Screenings involve background checks with police, courts and corrections databases. To date, 4,300 workers have been screened. 

The change responds to the cannabis retail industry’s need for security-screened workers, reduces costs to cannabis workers and ensures they can continue employment without interruption. It will also allow provincial security screening resources to focus on the qualification of new workers rather than the re-qualification of current workers who are already working in the legal cannabis retail industry.

All workers with a current valid security screening will have their security verification period extended from the date of their initial verification. Security verifications for all new workers will be valid for five years.

For more information:

Research and insights by Destination BC: BC Public Perceptions Report

During the pandemic, Destination BC has been actively monitoring the travel and tourism landscape, and producing reports to understand the impact of COVID-19 on BC tourism.

As part of this, they’ve been tracking British Columbians’ current views on travel and tourism, including related behaviour intentions. 

Through bi-weekly waves of research commissioned with Insights West, industry partners can learn about BC residents’ perceptions and intentions and watch how results trend over time. Read the latest BC Public Perceptions report.

Destination BC has also been rounding up relevant research and articles each week related to the travel and tourism industry and COVID-19. Information provided in these Roundup Reports highlights not only local insights, but global insights which may be applicable to BC now.

The latest report, compiled on July 6, has findings that include:

  • BC residents are conservative in their travel intentions amid Phase 3 announcement.
  • Decrease in sales volumes reported as greatest impact on businesses.
  • Encouraging tourism will allow many BC tourism businesses to turn profits. 

We also encourage you to familiarize yourself with our Signals & Sentiment Dashboard, designed to help BC’s tourism industry make strategic, data-driven marketing decisions in the coming months.

While the tourism industry and British Columbia as a whole has experienced the impact of the pandemic, reported tourism statistics of Q1 (Jan-Mar 2020) are now available in DBC’s latest Tourism Indicators report.


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