The Conservative critic for interprovincial trade, Dan Albas, has called on the Liberal government to challenge whether or not provincial limits on cross-border alcohol sales are constitutional. Okanagan MP, Albas, was the author of the private member’s bill that lifted federal regulations against interprovincial wine sales and now he is pushing for a recent New Brunswick case to be elevated to the Supreme Court of Canada.
The case involves a consumer, Gerard Comeau, who was charged for buying beer in Quebec and taking it home with him to Tracadie, N.B. The judge has announced that the law against cross-border beer purchasing was unconstitutional and now the New Brunswick government is appealing that decision. However, Albas has called on for the case to be elevated straight to the country’s top court. In a statement issued on Monday, Albas claimed that “this statement of provincial protectionism needs to come to an end,” adding that “this is not only important in having the potential to free the beer for Canadians, but more importantly has the potential to open our internal economy for Canadian producers. People want to buy Canadian and it should not be easier for a winery in B.C. to sell directly to Asia than to Ontario, as is the case today.”