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Coronavirus: B.C. wineries prepared to reopen across the province

The B.C. Wine Institute says it supports the government's efforts to minimize the risk and spread of COVID-19. B.C. Wine Institute

B.C. wineries are set to reopen after carefully planning the restart of the industry, after following directions from B.C.’s Restart Plan and the provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry.

“On May 14th, the B.C. Wine Institute engaged industry stakeholders in a constructive dialogue around reopening guidelines, and ultimately best practices, specific to the B.C. wine industry,” said Carie Jones, B.C. Wine Institute’s communications manager.

“Together, this input resulted in the development of a B.C. wine industry Ready to Reopen Toolkit.”

The reopen toolkit includes recommendations for best practices and key messages wineries need to safely reopen.

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Some of the Ready to Reopen Toolkit recommendations for health and safety guidelines include: 

  • Reduced winery capacity
  • Employee training
  • Tasting room reservations
  • Physical distancing guide markers
  • Increased sanitization of customer-contact surfaces and objects
  • Contactless payment options
  • Limiting group booking size

“Engagement from industry stakeholders and consultation with WorkSafeBC was key in establishing reopening best practices and recommendations,” said Miles Prodan, B.C. Wine Institute’s president and CEO.

“Our wine industry is diverse and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for all wineries. We believe by engaging industry, together, we’ve been able to build upon our industry-leading standards in customer experience and engagement to ensure a careful and safe reopening for B.C. wineries and the community.”

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The B.C. Wine Institute says it supports the government’s efforts to minimize the risk and spread of COVID-19.

It says members will avoid non-essential and inter-community travel.

“This summer the focus for wineries will be on strengthening the connections within their local communities. While online service will continue to serve wine lovers across the country to ensure a safe recovery and a bright, resilient future,” said Jones.

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