B E E R C A N A DA
wave making the situation even more challenging for the food-service
industry and the 1.2 million women and men it employs,
every small step governments can take to help keep a local busi-ness
open and protect jobs is a win for everybody: the business
owner, their employees, their customers and their communities.
“The relief governments are already providing is critical to
ensuring bars and restaurants have a fighting chance at recovery.
But raising taxes, especially taxes on products like beer that
account for a significant portion of our sales, is taking a step
backwards and is harmful to everyone connected to making,
selling and serving beer,” said Larry Issacs, president of the
Firkin Group of Pubs. “Simply put, freezing beer taxes is a small,
but important, measure to support restaurants during this
In Canada, 85 per cent of the beer consumed here is made
here. It’s by-and-large a local industry with small brewers and
larger producers making significant contributions to Canada’s
GDP. Yet tax is the single largest component of Canadian beer
prices. Almost half the price of beer in Canada – 47 per cent – is
Almost half the price of
beer in Canada – 47 per
cent – is government
tax, a commodity tax
rate five times higher
than the U.S., and
than most European
government tax, a commodity tax rate five times higher than the
U.S., and significantly higher than most European Union countries.
In fact, consumers and licensees in many Canadian prov-inces
pay more in tax than most U.S. consumers pay for beer.
As well, beer taxes continue to increase – in some cases
automatically – every year. Since the federal government intro-duced
an automatic alcohol escalator tax in 2017, federal beer
taxes have gone up four times, most recently on April 1, 2020, at
the onset of the pandemic. They’re scheduled to increase again
on April 1, 2021.
Moreover, prior to the pandemic, average provincial beer tax
loads were increasing about double the rate of inflation.
Increasing beer taxes more, especially during this time of
economic uncertainty, does not just affect Canadian brewers
– it impacts the thousands of Canadians and businesses
connected to beer. Servers at bars and restaurants. Barley
farmers. Maltsters. Can and bottle manufacturers. Delivery
women and men. Beer and liquor store employees. Tourism and
hospitality professionals. Small business owners. The 15,000
Canadians who work in Canada’s 1,110 breweries.
With the support of a growing number of partners
representing industries and sectors across Canada, Beer Canada
is leading Freeze it for Them – a campaign in support of the
millions of Canadians who enjoy beer, and the thousands of
women and men working in areas supported by beer, some hit
hardest by the pandemic.
To support the collective economic recovery, protect and
create jobs and provide relief to Canadians who need it, Beer
Canada and its partners are calling on governments across the
country to #FreezeItForThem.
To learn more, visit www.freezeitforthem.ca and sign the pledge to
show support. It will go a long way in ensuring a prosperous future
for Canadians coast-to-coast.
34 § POURED CANADA § www.poured.ca