The Ontario Craft Brewers (OCB), the voice of craft beer in Ontario, is toasting the introduction of legislation to end the MFA, which will pave the way for greater access to local craft beers and improve choice and convenience for consumers.
“This is a great day for Ontario consumers and locally-owned craft breweries,” says Scott Simmons, President of OCB. “Ontario has some of the best craft beer in the world, but the MFA makes them too hard to find. Moving to end that sweetheart deal will finally put the interest of consumers and craft beer lovers ahead of a few foreign-owned multinationals.”
Today’s announcements build on other recent measurements, such as halting scheduled tax hikes to keep beer prices affordable, and extending sales hours at taprooms and retail outlets that have made it easier for craft beer drinkers to find their favourite beer. These changes, in turn, will go a long way to helping Ontario’s locally-owned craft breweries succeed, which will continue to drive economic growth across the province.
Ontario’s craft beer industry now employs over 2,200 people with quality, local jobs across Ontario, especially in rural and northern communities, and have helped generate over 9,000 additional indirect jobs in additional tourism, construction, and agriculture opportunities local craft breweries bring. All told, Ontario’s craft beer sector generates more than $1.4 billion in economic growth each year and today’s changes are another step in helping them further grow and succeed.
“It is time Ontario catches up with the rest of the world and creates an alcohol retail system that provides real choice and convenience for consumers, and fairness for all brewers,” adds Simmons. “We applaud the Ford government for paving the way to expanded access to local craft beer, which is good for taxpayers, good for consumers, and good for our economy.”