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Government to Launch Review of Craft Alcohol Industry

Released on January 14, 2015

Government will launch a comprehensive third-party review of its policies related to the province’s growing craft alcohol industry.

“Saskatchewan’s craft alcohol industry has undergone tremendous growth in recent years with more and more small manufacturers providing quality products to consumers within our province and beyond,” Minister responsible for the Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority Don McMorris said. “We want to be sure SLGA’s policies are supportive of industry while also balancing the concerns of other stakeholders and the provincial treasury.”

The review will consider a number of issues including the mark-up structure applied to craft alcohol, production thresholds, direct shipping of craft alcohol to retailers, the ability for growler fills to be done by retailers such as taverns and restaurants and the overall impact of the industry on Saskatchewan’s economy.

A Request for Proposal (RFP) will be issued in February seeking an independent third-party to conduct the review.  In conjunction with the review, SLGA is temporarily raising the production limits for craft liquor manufacturers. The interim measure will ensure craft alcohol manufacturers can continue to operate without significant financial impact from provincial liquor mark-ups. 

“Increased production limits will allow craft manufacturers to expand their operations as the market demand for locally made products grows,” Saskatchewan Craft Alcohol Producers acting chairperson Susan Echlin said.  “We’re pleased that government recognizes the emergence of our quickly expanding industry and we look forward to participating in the review.” 

Saskatchewan’s craft liquor industry is made up of five microbreweries, six cottage wineries and four microdistilleries.  There are approximately 35 brew pubs who also manufacture small volumes of beer.

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For more information, contact:

David Morris
Saskatchewan Liquor and Gaming Authority
Regina
Phone: 306-787-1721
Email: dmorris@slga.gov.sk.ca

Susan Echlin
Saskatchewan Craft Alcohol Producers
Perdue
Phone: 306-290-1693

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