Call to action: revised National Liquor Policy.

So the newly drafted National Liquor Policy has been issued. It found its way into my inbox through a number of irate restaurateurs. These people are friends of mine, whose livelihood depends on such laws. Hence the…umm…”agitated” tone that was used.

It is a well known fact that running a restaurant is one of the hardest things you can do (many, many more fail than succeed). Perhaps a lesser known fact is how much a restaurant depends on the sales of booze to support it. The successful ones will make delicious food, using clever cost of sales to plate a finished dish. They’ll have mark-ups and margins that enable them to reach a price for the end plate of food. But it is incredibly tight, once you factor in staff, running costs, rent etc.

Imagine taking away any cash made through selling booze.

The restaurant industry would collapse almost overnight. That’s not an exaggerated statement. The industry would die. Your favourite local bistro? Gone. The Italian institution that has been there for three generations? Done. The burger joint that brought some energy into your neighbourhood? Sorry. The second store that the mega popular restaurant on the other side of Cape Town FINALLY announced was opening. Well…it probably won’t anymore.

Never mind the hundreds of hundreds of jobs that will be lost.

Anyway, needless to say the proposal is a massive, steaming pile of shit. Some of the content is outlined below:

“Amongst other things it proposes changes to the following matters that will have an impact on the City’s Control of Undertakings that Sell Liquor to the Public By-law and the enforcement thereof:
• Liquor premises to be located at least 500m from:
o schools;
o places of worship;
o recreation facilities;
o rehabilitation or treatment centres;
o residential areas; and
o public institutions;
• No liquor licences to be issued to:
o petrol stations and premises attached to petrol stations;
o premises near public transport; and
o areas not classified as entertainment or zoned by municipalities trading in liquor.
Places in areas listed above who already have licences should have licences terminated within two years”

In other words, basically every venue with a liquor license will have theirs taken away. It’s ridiculous and unfair and it needs to be fixed. But you can help. You can object. If you agree with any of the above, please say so. Speak up.

You may submit any objections to:

Go forth and eat,



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3 Responses to Call to action: revised National Liquor Policy.

  1. Chris Potgieter June 30, 2015 at 9:05 pm #

    There is no way in hell they can enforce this more particularly in the light of the fact that each province now has its own liquor by-law.

    The time for civil disobedience is now and we must tell the ruling junta to go to hell.

  2. John Ford July 1, 2015 at 10:15 pm #

    A completely ludicrous, and ultimately unenforceable law. This regime (it is not sufficiently competent to be described as a government) is very good at passing laws and not being able to enforce them If they could, most of them would be in jail. It will be another regulation which is ignored by the populace, and with very good reason.

  3. John Ford July 1, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    PS Most of the regulations have actually been in place for a long time. When we applied for a liquor licence in 2003, we had to submit a map showing all schools, religious institutions and other liquor outlets within a 1Km radius of our premises and none of them had to be too close to us. It’s the under 21 bit which is the most stupid

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