VICTORIA, BC – The Times-Columnist newspaper reports that Dave Thomas, the owner of Lighthouse Brewing Company, has been banned by the BC Liquor Control and Licensing Act from selling Lighthouse beer at Podium Sports Grill, a bar he co-owns with three other partners.
The ban stems from a rule instituted over 50 years ago that banned brewers and distillers from owning “tied houses”, i.e. bars or taverns where their product was sold. The intention was a protect small breweries and distilleries from being blocked from entering the market by larger companies, but Thomas and others argue that the law now has an opposite effect.
Thomas says that he’d like to see the rule relaxed to allow him to offer at least a couple of Lighthouse beers at the bar, but there has been no indication that the Liquor Control and Licensing Branch are considering any changes at this time.