Queensland parliament has voted to permanently enshrine several temporary measures introduced in response to the coronavirus pandemic in law, including allowing restaurants to sell takeaway wine.
Licensed restaurants that also offer on-premises dining will be allowed to sell takeaway or delivery wine, with a maximum limit of 1.5 litres of wine – or two bottles – sold with a meal between 10am and 10pm.
However, Queensland distillers say the vote puts them at a disadvantage as the Palaszczuk Government did not extend those takeaway rights to pre-mixed spirits, cider or beer.
The distillers go as far as to say that they have been “betrayed by a State Government decision to reward winemakers from south of the border while ignoring spirits producers working hard in their own state”.
“We now have an outrageous situation where Queenslanders can buy a bottle of wine from the Yarra Valley or the Hunter with their takeaway meals but their own government says they can’t enjoy an iconic Bundaberg Rum,” Spirits & Cocktails Australia chief executive Greg Holland said.
“It’s a slap in the face to the incredibly hardworking craft producers of this state, who buy local produce every day and attract tourists to their regions, as well as the larger manufacturers of RTDs (ready-to-drinks) who directly employ thousands of Queenslanders.”
State Development and Regional Industries Committee that this would provide a valuable boost to Queensland small businesses and minimise harm.