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For Immediate Release

Nov. 22, 2013

Ministry of Justice



Charities benefit from new liquor auction rules


VICTORIA – Non-profits and charities have a new way to raise money for causes that benefit society, as the B.C. government relaxes the rules around auctioning liquor.


Following through on an earlier commitment, the B.C. government is allowing privately-donated liquor, such as a vintage bottle of wine or a rare bottle of scotch from an individual’s private collection, as well as liquor donated by a business or manufacturer, to be put up for auction – as long as the funds raised go towards a charitable purpose.


Effective today, small volumes of liquor – up to two cases of wine, eight 750ml bottles of liquor, and/or 24 six-packs of beer, cider or coolers – can be auctioned without a permit. For larger volumes of liquor, a $50 permit will be required. The permitting process is quick and simple, and was developed in consultation with the non-profit and charity sector.


These changes are an example of the practical and common-sense way in which government is modernizing B.C.’s liquor laws.


The B.C. government launched a review of B.C.’s liquor laws in August. The public consultation component, which saw an unprecedented level of engagement, closed on Oct. 31, 2013. Drawing from feedback on his blog, which was visited more than 76,000 times in seven weeks, and his consultations with stakeholders and industry groups, John Yap, Parliamentary Secretary for Liquor Policy Reform, will provide his recommendations to Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton on Nov. 25, 2013.


The goal of the liquor policy review is to make balanced changes that reflect current lifestyles, continue to grow B.C.’s economy and minimize health and public safety impacts.




Suzanne Anton, Attorney General and Minister of Justice –


“The B.C. government recognized the rules around auctioning liquor were unnecessarily restrictive and has now taken action to change them – promise made, promise kept. Whether it’s for arts and culture, sports and recreation, or education and literacy, these changes open the door to new fundraising opportunities for B.C.’s charities and non-profits, ultimately benefiting our communities.”


John Yap, Parliamentary Secretary for Liquor Policy Reform –


“These changes bring a common-sense approach to auctioning liquor for philanthropic purposes. It was outdated liquor laws such as this one that prompted a review of B.C.’s liquor policies. As I prepare my final report, I will be considering the policy research and feedback I received from the public and stakeholders during our liquor policy consultation.”



Learn More:


Read the comments and blog posts provided on B.C.’s Liquor Policy Review website:


Read about other practical reforms made to B.C.'s liquor laws over the past two years:


To learn more about the rules for liquor licensing in B.C., visit:



Media Contact:


Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Justice
250 213-3602




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