Bring down all barriers

Re: The article in the Western News “Albas challenges wine barriers.” Wait just a second here.

Re: The article in the Western News “Albas challenges wine barriers.” Wait just a second here.

Rookie Conservative MP Dan Albas wants to get rid of Canada’s arcane interprovincial trade barriers on wine. Here’s a better idea: get rid of all interprovincial trade barriers. Why start, and stop, with wine?

I hope the member for Okanagan-Coquihalla doesn’t think the wine industry is worth more to Canadians than, say, the rest of the agricultural sector. Albas’s motion has support from Kelowna Conservative MP Ron Cannan. One wonders, are these two even aware that it’s easier at present to import meat from the United States than to buy it from a small abattoir in another province?

Here in B.C., the B.C. Liberal Party destroyed the meat industry through overregulation. Local abattoirs were driven out of business and ranchers have been forced to reduce their herds. Politicians claim this was done for safety, but where’s the evidence that we were unsafe in the first place? And, are we any safer now with 99 per cent of our meat coming from huge industrial facilities in Alberta and the United States? Massive meat recalls resulting from E. coli and listeriosis indicate quite the opposite. And meat prices are through the roof because, guess what? There’s no competition anymore.

Wine might be important on some level to the Canadian economy, but you’d think Albas and Cannan might want to do something about the much more fundamental business of filling a family’s shopping cart with safe and affordable groceries.

Mischa Popoff

Osoyoos