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Wine Industry Roundtable Grows to Meet the Evolving Beverage Industry

11/01/2019


​​​This article was previously published in the summer issue of Grapes to Wine and has been reproduced with permission.

For the past seven years, MNP has been hosting the B.C. Wine Industry Roundtable; an annual forum for business owners and industry stakeholders to gather, network and receive key information about the industry. This year the new and enhanced conference forum was held on Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at the Penticton Lakeside Resort and Conference Centre.

New to 2018, we decided that the best way to make our annual event bigger and better was to join forces with industry stakeholders who share our vision for the continued growth and development of the B.C. Beverage Industry. MNP was proud to continue our commitment as a co-founding sponsor and partner along Farm Credit Canada and Buy B.C. of the brand new Fortify Conference.

Over 170 distillery, brewery, cidery and winery owners, presidents, managers and staff attended the sold-out conference and tradeshow which featured presentations from industry professionals and experts.

MNP’s goal has always been to assist the development of the B.C. wine and beverage Industry. The industry has continued its tremendous growth. The regulatory landscape continues to change and evolve at a dizzying pace and the impacts on business owners can be direct and immediate. We have also seen the rapid diversification of the beverage sector to include many new and exciting craft breweries, distilleries and cideries.

Recognizing that the industry sectors face similar challenges, the conference provided sessions on marketing, human resources, finance and operations and regulatory requirements.

Presented by the Business Alliance for Artisan Fermenters and Distllers; and spearheaded by industry champions, Sandra Oldfield and Carolyn MacLaren, Fortify was established to fill a need across the beverage industry for education, training and networking opportunities to help B.C.’s breweries, wineries, distilleries and cideries affordably access business supports and tools to increase viability and profitability.

Those similarities were clear in the opening panel session “Things I Would Do Differently If I Started Over”. The panel was moderated by Sandra Oldfield with presentations from Tyler Dyck from Okanagan Spirits, Kristen Needham from Sea Cider Farm, Cynthia Enns from Laughing Stock Winery and Patt Dyck from Cannery Brewing who represent different sectors and come from across British Columbia. Each one unique, these successful business owners shared common messages to new entrepreneurs; focus on relationships with your family, your staff, your customers; know and share your unique story; work with trusted advisors to ensure your business structure, systems and processes are in place to position your business for financial success.

Attendees had the opportunity to learn, share and leverage experiences and best practices from each other throughout the conference. For more details on this year’s conference and to provide suggestions on topics for the 2019 conference, visit ​​​www.fortifyconference.ca​.​

Geoff McIntyre, CPA, CA, is MNP’s Regional Leader, Food & Beverage Processing practice. He can be reached at 250.763.8919 or geoff.mci​​[email protected]​​​.