May 04, 2020

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues, 

We’ve made it to the end of another week. We’ll be back with our next update on Monday.

Here’s what you’ll find in today’s COVID-19 update:

  • Provincial update: BC extends states of emergency and details on reopening BC coming next week
  • LCRB update: extension of license expiry date for licenses expiring between March 31 and June 30, 2020
  • Update: reopening of hospitality businesses
  • BC Emergency Benefit for Workers: online applications open
  • Free Webinar on May 6: Strategizing the reopening of your taproom or brewpub
  • BDL update: bank debits
  • Reminder: LDB resumed limited selection bottle pick service
  • ContainerWorld COVID-19 Operational Update
  • BWI Business World: 6 types of COVID-19 protective cashier shields now available
  • Foodora ceasing operations in Canada on May 11
  • Helpful links and resources

Find all past updates from ABLE BC here.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us: jeff@ablebc.ca or danielle@ablebc.ca

Provincial update: BC extends state of emergency and details on reopening BC coming next week

On April 29, the Province announced the provincial state of emergency is being extended for the third time to support the extraordinary measures taken by the Province under the Emergency Program Act to keep people safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, has officially extended the state of emergency through the end of the day on May 12, 2020.

Reopening the province: during the press conference this week in which BC Premier Horgan announced he was extending the provincial state of emergency for another two weeks, he also alluded that details regarding the reopening of BC’s economy are coming next week.

We will keep members updated as new details become available.
Other provinces have already announced their plans for reopening, including:OntarioNew Brunswick, and Saskatchewan

LCRB update: extension of license expiry date for licenses expiring between March 31 and June 30, 2020

We are very pleased to share with you the following update from Mary Sue Maloughney, Assistant Deputy Minister and General Manager (Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch, Ministry of Attorney General):

To All Liquor Licensees, except Licensee Retail Stores, Special Wine Stores, and Wine Stores on shelf in grocery:

RE: Extension of licence expiry date for licences expiring between March 31, 2020 and June 30, 2020

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Province’s March 2020 declaration of a state of emergency and the Provincial Health Officer’s March 2020 declaration of a public health emergency, I am putting in place time-limited measures to support liquor licensees.

The Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch (LCRB) recognizes that some in the liquor industry are facing significant financial challenges related to the COVID-19 provincial health emergency.  We are aware that this is a trying time for many of you and as such the LCRB has been actively investigating regulatory tools to ease the financial burden of upcoming renewal fees.

The general manager has the authority, in extraordinary times, to extend the expiry date of liquor licences, and thus temporarily defer the associated licence renewal fees. Licensees whose licence expires between March 31, 2020 and June 30, 2020, and who find themselves in financial need, may request a licence extension to September 30, 2020 by contacting LCRB at: LCRB_COVID19@gov.bc.ca.

If your licence expired between March 31, 2020 and April 30, 2020 and has been renewed, but you find yourself in financial need, please contact the branch at: LCRB_COVID19@gov.bc.ca.

Full details: please download the full update from the LCRB for more details, including important information and considerations related to temporary licence extensions.

A note from ABLE BC: this extension is in direct response to our industry’s coordinated efforts through the Business Technical Advisory Panel. We greatly appreciate the ongoing work of Attorney General David Eby, his staff, and the LCRB to support our industry in this time of crisis. Several other recommendations are currently being examined, and we hope to have additional news for you soon.

Update: positive steps toward reopening hospitality businesses

Yesterday, ABLE BC joined many of our industry colleagues and a broad coalition of on-premise operators in supporting the BC Restaurants and Foodservices Association’s “Blueprint for Re-opening” on-premise dining in BC. Our proposal has now been submitted to the highest levels of government, including the Premier, Minister of Health, and Public Health Officer.

Over the past week, we have been working collaboratively with our partners in BC’s restaurant and foodservice industry to suggest a roadmap and guidelines on a phased approach to resuming on-premise dining experiences. Our recommendations focus on practical public health procedures that will keep your staff and customers safe, and also allow flexibility to meet your particular business needs.

Although we are not yet able to share the document publicly, we will do so in the near future. We also expect a general announcement from Premier Horgan next week on reopening BC’s economy.

BC Emergency Benefit for Workers: Online Applications Open

British Columbians whose ability to work has been affected because of the COVID-19 pandemic and are receiving the Canada Emergency Response Benefit can now apply for the BC Emergency Benefit for Workers(BCEBW) online.

The BCEBW is a one-time, tax-free payment of $1,000 for eligible British Columbians.

To be eligible for the BCEBW, people must:

  • have been a resident of BC on March 15, 2020;
  • meet the eligibility requirements for the CERB;
  • have been approved for the CERB, even if a federal benefit payment has not yet been received;
  • be at least 15 years old on the date of application;
  • have filed, or agree to file, a 2019 B.C. income tax return; and
  • not be receiving provincial income assistance or disability assistance.

How to apply:

Applying online is the fastest, easiest way to receive the benefit. To apply, British Columbians with their social insurance number and direct deposit information can go to: www.gov.bc.ca/workerbenefit

On Monday, May 4, 2020, agents will be available by phone to assist people who need help applying, including those who do not have internet access.

Helpful Links:

Free webinar on May 6: Strategizing the reopening of your taproom or brewpub

The Hotel School at Cornell University’s College of Business is hosting a free webinar on May 6 at 1:00 pm EDT: Back on Tap – Strategizing the reopening of your taproom or brewpub.

Register here.

What you will learn:

  • How to take advantage of the lockdown by re-evaluating your business strategy
  • How to leverage the relaunch of your operation once restrictions are lifted
  • What adjustments might be needed to operate in our new reality
  • What customers will expect in terms of service and safety in light of COVID-19
  • Why the training of your staff is more important than ever

Learn more and register here.

BDL Update: bank debits

We understand there have been some frustrating invoicing discrepancies as our partners at BDL get back to full operations after being subject to a malicious cyber attack. BDL is doing all it can to reconcile accounts in a timely and efficient manner, but regrettably there are some delays. 

If you are experiencing issues, please reach out to the BDL contact centre to get them resolved: 1-800-661-2337 or bdl@bdl.ca

If you are unable to get them resolved, please contact Jeff: jeff@ablebc.ca.

Reminder: LDB resumed limited selection bottle pick service

In case you missed it, as of April 23, 2020, the LDB resumed bottle pick service for a limited selection of top selling items.

LDB Wholesale writes: The select products reflect the top-selling SKUs and were chosen in an effort to support liquor retailers and hospitality customers while ensuring orders will be picked, assembled and shipped on time. 

The complete list of available products can be found here. Please note that the 10% bottle pick rule- as applicable to specific customers types, and outlined in the WCC Order Handbook – will continue to apply.

Read more here.

ContainerWorld COVID-19 Operational Update

ContainerWorld has shared with us the following COVID-19 operational update from April 29, 2020:

  • Domestic volumes continue to increase, both in inbound and outbound, including through our Direct Store Distribution (DSD) channel.
     
  • Our DSD delivery schedule for the upcoming Victoria Day long weekend was posted yesterday on our website.
     
  • Import inbound volumes are somewhat reduced this week, compared to last. Import outbound to the BCLDB continues to increase over previous weeks and we continue to maintain a minimal backlog.
     
  • Import forwarding activities remain consistent with last week’s update, with the note that we have not yet received a current update regarding the challenges shipping from South Africa. We shall advise as soon as available.
     
  • Out of Province outbound volumes are also increasing, for which we are shipping based on FIFO. However, we are now experiencing some additional administration regarding transfer PO’s we are receiving for product that has not yet arrived in the country, or that has not yet been import customs cleared into BC inventory and available for transfer.
     
  • Therefore, to help reduce this extra administration associated with such transfer PO’s, we ask that you time your provincial PO transfer requests only to products that have arrived, are import customs (with a customs control number) and that are available for transfer. This will not only reduce admin it will also minimize the delivery aging of outbound/transfer PO’s for those products that have not yet arrived, orare not yet available for transfer.
     
  • Our warehouse operations, inclusive of our Kamloops and Kelowna, continue to maintain functionality through the current situation.

We hope that everyone continues to remain healthy and safe through this time.

Kind regards, Customer Care

BWI Business World: 6 types of COVID-19 protective cashier shields now available

ABLE BC Associate Member BWI Business World Inc. now has 6 types of COVID-19 Protective Cashier Shields in stock with new ones coming soon.

In addition to their Liquor Store Protective Cashier Shields, BWI has extended its COVID-19 product line to include: 

  • Shields for hotel reservation desks and smaller counter surfaces
  • Hanging Shields designed for all type of ceilings
  • Coming soon: protective barrier shields for the pub/bar and restaurant industries

For more information: email Kim at kim@bwibusinessworld.com, visit the BWI website, or download the Cashier Shield Order Form.

Foodora ceasing operations in Canada on May 11

On April 27, Foodora announced it will be ceasing operations in Canada on May 11. 

Foodora says it “has not been able to reach a level of profitability in Canada that’s sustainable enough to continue operations, competing against strong local players and a highly saturated market for online food delivery.”

They are also “working on putting together a proposal to provide additional recovery to employees and other creditors.”

With reports of Foodora owing more than $4.7 million to hundreds of foodservice establishments across Canada, we recommend stopping using Foodora if you have not already.

Helpful Links and Resources

New resources, tools, and other content are being created at a rapid rate to support businesses during the COVID-19 crisis.

Here are some helpful links we have recently come across:

  • BC Wine Institute Webinar on May 6: Maximize BCWI’s new app for your winery – Wines of BC Explorer
  • Destination BC: Messaging Guidance for BC’s Tourism Industry (week of April 30 to May 6)
  • BC Ministry of Health: COVID-19 Guidance to the Hotel Sector (updated April 28, 2020)
  • Allied Golf Association British Columbia: COVID-19 Protection – Best practices for responsible operation of BC golf courses
  • Small Business BC: free COVID-19 webinars on a wide range of topics geared at equipping businesses with the skills and knowledge they need to survive the new realities of our COVID economy
  • Small Business BC: small business resources for the food and beverage industry
  • Small Business BC: BC’s new legislation – updating workplace policies
  • go2HR: offering 20% off SuperHost online courses, including Foundations of Service Quality and Service For All, for a limited time only

For more information:

Public Health Agency of Canada Website

Updates from the Government of British Columbia

Updates and Resources from ABLE BC

Human Resources & Occupational Health & Safety Info from go2HR

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


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