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Wine Law Conference

In conjunction with the Vancouver International Wine Festival:

Addressing Wine and Liquor Law in British Columbia


Download Wine Law Brochure

Who Should Attend

Attorneys and all professionals in the wine and liquor industry

Why You Should Attend

Starting and running a vineyard, winery or liquor licensed business is difficult enough, but compliance with the constantly changing regulatory system and policies is a unique challenge. This seminar will address the ins and outs of operating wineries, vineyards and liquor licensees, including changes in legislation and regulations.

This seminar will progress from getting a handle on pricing and sales issues to legal issues related to marketing and the various distribution channels, including shipping law reform. Trade-marks, geographical indicators and the economics of the industry, as well as legislative trends and regulatory processes, will also be addressed.

We will bring together experts from a variety of perspectives and disciplines to share their experiences, challenges and success stories regarding this evolving landscape. Don't miss this annual gathering of the region's leading wine and liquor law professionals. Join us for valuable discussions about the industry, as well as the wine tasting reception moderated by Sid Cross, Co-Founder of Chefs Table Society, following the seminar.

Program Co-Chairs: Mark Hicken, Esq. of Vintage Law Group

and Christopher S. Wilson, Esq. of Bull, Housser & Tupper LLP

What You Will Learn

  • Provincial regulation and taxation of alcoholic beverages
  • Sales outside British Columbia
  • The licensing scheme for British Columbia
  • Establishing new appellations
  • Third-party internet marketing services
  • Creating profitable business models

What Attendees Have Said About Similar Programs

  • "Excellent faculty and great information shared. Thank you"


Monday, February 27, 2012

8:00 am

Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 am

Introduction and Overview

Mark Hicken, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Vintage Law Group / Vancouver, BC

Christopher S. Wilson, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Bull, Housser & Tupper LLP / Vancouver, BC

8:45 am

Wine Sales in British Columbia: Update on Provincial Regulation and Taxation of Alcoholic Beverages

Historical development of regulatory policy and what it suggests for the future; comparison of levels of taxation charged in British Columbia and other jurisdictions; finding hidden taxes; accountability and transparency in the decision-making processes

Albert J. Hudec, Esq.
Farris, Vaughan, Wills & Murphy LLP / Vancouver, BC

9:30 am

Reaching Larger Markets: Sales Outside British Columbia

New developments in inter-provincial shipping laws: Update on the federal bill to modernize the IILA (Importation of Intoxicating Liquors Act); implications for wineries, retailers, liquor boards, and consumers

Mark Hicken, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Vintage Law Group / Vancouver, BC

10:15 am

Break: Coffee, Tea and Conversation

10:30 am

Licensing Framework for the Various Licenses

Overview of the licensing scheme for British Columbia: The policy debate over eliminating special orders and current issues for special occasion licenses

Bert Hick, President
Rising Tide Consultants Ltd. / Vancouver, BC

Current issues for retail licenses

Randy Wilson, Partner
Liquor Plus / Victoria, BC

Current issues for restaurant licenses

Ian Tostenson, President and CEO
BC Restaurant & FoodServices Association / Vancouver, BC

12:15 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:30 pm

Establishing New Appellations: How Do You Do It? What Would Make Sense?

The intersection of wine law and trademarks under the Trade-marks Act

Christopher S. Wilson, Esq., Program Co-Chair
Bull, Housser & Tupper LLP / Vancouver, BC

Business and regulatory perspectives on use of appellations for marketing today

Jeffrey S. Thomas, Esq., Chair
British Columbia Wine Authority / Vancouver, BC

3:00 pm

Groupon-Type Promotions and Other Third-Party Internet Marketing Services

What you can do under your license vs. what a third party can do: Lessons from development of California's new Industry Advisory on Marketing of Alcoholic Beverages by Unlicensed Third-Party Service Providers

Thomas F. Carey, Esq.
Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty / Napa, CA

3:30 pm

Break: Soda, Tea and Conversation

3:45 pm

Forum on Creating Profitable Business Models: What Fits the Regulatory Structure and Economics for Wine in British Columbia?

The economics of producing wine in British Columbia: What is the competitiveness of the British Columbia wine industry compared to other wine industries around the world?

Andy Hira, Ph.D.
Simon Fraser University / Vancouver, BC

Perspectives on freezing weather and the impact on market prices; economic recession and opportunities for new entrants from the impact on land values; regulatory barriers and work-arounds; British Columbia wine prices (too expensive? too cheap?)

William E. Knutson, Q.C.
Shapiro Hankinson & Knutson Law Corporation / Vancouver, BC

Tony Stewart, CEO and Proprietor
Quails' Gate Okanagan Valley / Kelowna, BC

Michael Raffan, Proprietor
Township 7 Vineyards and Winery / Penticton, BC

5:00 pm

Wine Tasting Reception for Faculty and Attendees with Sid Cross, Esq., Co-Founder and Advisor, Chefs Table Society.

Sponsored by Bull, Housser & Tupper LLC and Vintage Law Group

Sid Cross, Esq., Moderator, Co-Founder and Advisor
Chefs Table Society / Vancouver, BC

"the true decision-makers of wineries and the wine industry from around the world are all together, so the side meetings and boardroom discussions are more fruitful than any other festival in Canada, which of course, is incredibly valuable."
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Vancouver International Wine Festival 2012