Canadian Pizza Magazine

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Higher wine taxes a hit to Ontario’s restaurant industry: Restaurants Canada


February 27, 2016
By Canadian Pizza

Toronto – Tax increases on wine announced in Friday’s Ontario budget are yet another hit on the restaurant industry in Ontario, Restaurants Canada said in a news release.

“Restaurants simply cannot absorb all the increased costs imposed by the Ontario government,” said James Rilett, the association’s vice-president for Ontario. “The ORPP, higher utilities, higher wages, and now today’s announcement of higher alcohol taxes are direct hits to viability of these small businesses.”

The government announced a series of markups, tax increases and minimum prices that will increase the cost of wine for both individuals and businesses, the association said, noting that in Ontario there is no wholesale pricing available for bar and restaurant owners.   

Ontario has some of the least bar- and restaurant-friendly liquor policies of any province, the release said. The province received a grade of D+ on Restaurants Canada’s “Raise the Bar Liquor Report Card,” one of the worst grades in the country, based on high prices and the retail monopoly system.

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Restaurants Canada was pleased, however, to see the government confirm its commitment to phase out the debt retirement charge on electricity and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board overpayments.