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Buck-a-beer 'doesn't mean anything to us' says local brewery

Owner says province could lower taxes on craft beer if it wanted to help
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2018-03-18 Full Beard IWD5 MH
The provincial government's buck-a-beer promise isn't going to change business at Full Beard Brewery in Timmins. Maija Hoggett/TimminsToday

With the government’s buck-a-beer promise coming into effect later this month, it’s not going to change anything for a Timmins brewery.

“It really doesn’t mean anything for us. People are going to be buying our beer no matter what, if they’re real craft drinkers or they like supporting their local brewery in Timmins they’re going to drink it no matter what,” Jonathan St-Pierre, one of the Full Beard owners, told Rock 92.1.

Earlier this week it was announced that buck-a-beer will be back again in Ontario by Aug. 27.

The government is lowering the minimum price floor to $1 for any beer with an alcohol volume below 5.6 per cent.

The minimum retail price for beer was $1 in Ontario from 2005 to 2008 until the previous Liberal government increased the minimum price to $1.25.

St-Pierre noted microbreweries across the province are in the same boat.

“We’re not going to change anything. We can’t reduce our product and be cheap, we want to hand out the best beer possible. And there’s no way we can drop it to that dollar,” he said.

For a craft brewer, there is no dollar beer recipe.

“Craft beer is trying to bring up our best ingredients,” he said. .

This week, for example, Full Beard launched a new sour beer called Twisted Whiskers featuring fresh strawberries from Aidie Creek Gardens, and local rhubarb.

To help out microbrewers, St-Pierre said the government could lower taxes on the product.

“Microbreweries across the province pay on beer that we produce in tax, we pay on if it goes into a keg, a growler, a can, a bottle,” he said, explaining they’re also taxed for the volume that is sold, plus HST.

“We have four to five taxes that we have to pay before we even actually give that bottle out to a customer or sell it to a customer,” he said.

- With files from Rogers Media




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