Health Care

Notley uncorks BC support for wine ban

Notley uncorks BC support for wine ban

Horgan feels this is not a trade war and he's not threatening any retaliatory actions against our neighbours and that includes a ban on Alberta beef.

"I think that if there is [an] ongoing dispute between Alberta and British Columbia there is definitely a role for the federal government to step in and help resolve the dispute". "I have made it clear to both of them the interest of British Columbia are my responsibility, I take very seriously and I will be resolute in protecting the interest of this great province".

The Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion has been extensively vetted by the National Energy Board and has received the endorsement of the energy-unfriendly Liberal federal government and the previous B.C. administration, that of Liberal Christy Clark.

Karen Collins, the owner of Asti Trattoria Italiana, dropped B.C. wines from her downtown restaurant on February 1, six days before Notley's announcement.

The NDP minister of agriculture, Lana Popham, briefly indicated a possible response Tuesday when reporters caught up with her during a previously scheduled tour of Okanagan wineries. We consume each other's goods and commodities (including oil here and wine there), we have common labour standards and our residents move freely back and forth to live and work in the other province in a host of occupations and industries.

"Originally I was hoping others might follow".

"I don't believe it's in anyone's interest to have dueling Premiers", Horgan said.

Examining the wine side of the equation a little more closely, consider that most of the wine produced in British Columbia is directly or indirectly controlled by three large companies: Arterra Wines Canada, headquartered in Mississauga; Andrew Peller Ltd., headquartered in Grimsby, Ont.; Mission Hill/von Mandl Family Estates, a private entity now controlling approximately 10 per cent of the vineyard acreage in the Okanagan Valley, with principal offices in Kelowna, Vancouver and Toronto. And that's my only focus in the days, weeks and months ahead.

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Kinder Morgan is also awaiting approval on its final route for the pipeline expansion before it can begin construction.

She says Alberta customers are significant supporters of the winery's products and make up most of the visitors to the winery during the tourist season.

The B.C. Wine Institute responded to Premier Notley's announcement with an open letter to its members, calling the boycott, "disturbing".

The decision will have an immediate and negative effect on local growers, says B.C. Grapegrowers Association President and Naramta's Bench 1775 Winery General Manager and Winemaker Valerie Tait. It's the part of BC that supports pipelines and strong barrier-free inter-provincial trade.

"It's a ripple, it won't be really anything that we can't get around", he added.

"It wasn't an easy decision".

The two provinces have traded shots over the past week after B.C. announced plans to limit the amount of bitumen that could flow through the province.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has reaffirmed his support for the project, which was approved a couple of years ago, however, Notley wants him to explicitly state that BC does not have the authority they claim to have regarding what goes into a pipeline. Alberta, of course, is going to hit us where it hurts and that's in the pocketbook.


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