Here we go, the Nova Scotia government sets out to prove its outdated, back-water attitudes with the NSLC leading the charge. So much for promoting small business and the services they offer customers.
In targeting several stores offering beer- or wine-making kits and in-store services – including a New Glasgow outlet – the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation is carrying the big stick. That’s what usually happens when someone has a monopoly.
Water N’ Wine on Stellarton Road is among the three named in an injunction sought in Supreme Court by the NSLC to shut down a feature to help customers. The corporation wants to stop any service that involves fermentation or storage of alcohol products in the stores.
This comes from a change to legislation the NDP government introduced 18 months ago giving the NSLC powers to police this issue.
With the staggering tax grab the province enjoys from the commercially made product, of course it has incentive to shut down any competition. Let it also be noted, though, that in the case of homemade wine and beer, this is a competition with a tiny percentage of the market.
U-vint stores are common in many other provinces. In the case of Water N’ Wine, it’s never been covert, the service offered is entirely up-front. It’s not hard to imagine the convenience to someone wanting to brew their own, but who for example might not have space for the equipment.
In commenting on this earlier, one of our local politicians assured us the law was aimed at bad apples: anyone taking advantage by making and selling the product.
By all means, go after the bad apples. But buzz off and leave be those offering a legal craft product – along with some help to customers who need it. It’s available in provinces confident enough to bid the dark ages goodbye.
If this government truly is on the side of entrepreneurship and the jobs it represents, get out of the face of business, out of the face of consumers and catch up with the times.