An application to sell wine in plastic containers sparked a sharp exchange of words between members when Falkirk Council Licensing Board met.
Councillor Allyson Black was the target for a blunt put-down from the convener, Councillor Malcolm Nicol, at the meeting yesterday (Wednesday) after she challenged his view that wine should only be sold over the counter in glass bottles.
Earlier the board had been told by businesswoman Erika Rosa that if she was given a licence to open her Italian-style Canton Colli Euganei off-sales in a former shoe shop in the town’s Cockburn Street she would like to offer cask wine from the tap in plastic containers either provided by the shop or customers.
Mr Nicol (pictured) admitted he “did not like the sound of that” – and said he would make it a condition of the application being approved that it did not happen.
He advised Ms Rosa: “You want to portray the right image for your business and this town and plastic bottles are entirely the wrong image. I’m not happy with the idea of plastic containers being used at all. Glass is the way forward.”
When Councillor Black, supported by Councillors Alan Nimmo and John McLuckie, said that, in her view, plastic containers were acceptable, the head of the eight-member committee responsible for licensing policy across the district, warned her: “As long as I’m convener of this board wine will be sold in glass containers and if you don’t like it Councillor Black you can go elsewhere.”
On his suggestion, the board agreed to continue the application for a month for Ms Rosa to provide examples of the containers and also ask Police Scotland – who confirmed they had no objections to the application – its views.
After the meeting Councillor Black said: “He was very arrogant and I thought his comments to me were inappropriate and actually quite cheeky. It’s not the job of this board to tell a company how to run its business or package its goods.”