Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  04 Oct 2010

HOSPITALITY: Champagne At Breakfast If It's Free


Recent Western Cape Business News

WHILE the sale of champagne or sparkling wine before 10 in the morning is not permitted throughout the entire Western Cape in terms of provincial legislation, the serving of free bubbly is perfectly acceptable.

"Recent media reports wrongly accuse the City of Cape Town of restricting champagne breakfasts," says Cllr Taki Amira, chairperson of the Liquor Policy Task Team.

"In actual fact, it is the existing provincial liquor law of 1989 which bans the sale of alcohol before 10:00. However the provision of free sparkling wine before the allotted time does not constitute an infringement of the law. Thus if one has a glass of champagne that is bought as part of a breakfast, it is in breach of the law and the supplier is operating at risk of possible prosecution," he says.

The ‘storm in a wine glass’ arose when the City of Cape Town approved a new by-law for liquor trading hours, which will take effect in January 2011.

"The Western Cape Liquor Act of 2009 which is being amended and is due to be passed soon, sets down generic trading hours for those local governments that do not pass their own by-law on trading hours in their area of jurisdiction," he says.

These hours are from 11:00 to 02:00 the following morning for ‘on consumption’ premises, and from 09:00 to 18:00 for ‘off consumption’ premises, seven days a week.

Until the new Liquor Act is promulgated, the current Act of 1989 defines the hours for ‘on consumption’ as being from 10:00 to 02:00 the following morning - with a possible extension to 04:00; and from 08:00 to 20:00 for ‘off consumption’.

"Using the new Act as a guide, the City of Cape Town has decided on the same 'on consumption' opening times, but has set the closing times dependent on where the establishment is situated and what the area is zoned for.

"It was difficult to please everybody, with some community leaders insisting on even more stringent trading hours. However, following an extensive public participation process, and heeding the comments of health authorities, the City eventually settled on these new time limits," says Cllr Amira.

"With over 3,6 million residents from widely divergent social environments, the City of Cape Town has a responsibility to treat all citizens equally, and to help fight the scourge of alcohol abuse.

"The soon-to-be implemented provincial legislation will also provide communities and municipalities in the Western Cape with a greater say on the approval of liquor licence applications. This alignment of provincial and municipal legislation will help create a safer and healthier environment for the millions of residents in Cape Town," he says.


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