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'Free My Grapes' bill moves on after MPs vote to revise outdated wine law

OTTAWA -- A unanimous vote by MPs has moved the country closer to wiping out a prohibition-era law that makes it illegal to carry a bottle of Canadian wine across a provincial boundary.

The vote on Bill C-311, a private members bill introduced by Okanagan-Coquihalla Conservative MP Dan Albas, received unanimous support on third reading late Wednesday night.

The legislation now goes to the senate.

Albas says Tories in the upper chamber have pledged to do everything possible to move the bill forward so it can receive royal assent before the summer break.

The legislation rewrites a rarely enforced, outdated law preventing a tourist from buying wine at vineyards, such as those in the Okanagan, Ontario's Niagara-on-the-Lake or Nova Scotia's Annapolis Valley, and taking the bottle back to their home province.

Supporters of the bill, including National Revenue Minister Gail Shea, say it reduces unnecessary inter provincial trade barriers, while promoting jobs and growth in Canada's wine industry.

For more from The Canadian Press, click here or scroll down The Tyee's home page.

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