Newfoundland Liquor Corp. runs a little rum to Beijing

James McLeod
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NLC hopes to help make Sino-Screech-in a success

There’s a bottle of Screech on its way to China for a Canada Day celebration, thanks to a timely phone call from The Telegram and some help from the Newfoundland and Labrador Liquor Corp. (NLC).

When expatriate Canadian Jim Boyce emailed The Telegram, he was at his wit’s end. He was planning a Canada Day celebration in Beijing and was looking for an array of Canadian food and drinks for the event.

“The idea was we have quite a few Canadians who work in the bar, restaurant and hotel business, but not many people in the city know about them, so my idea was to promote them and also to introduce Canadian food to Chinese people,” Boyce said.

“They’re small things, but it’s just to let people know there’s more to Canada than maple syrup and ice wine.”

The plan is to have poutine, P.E.I. oysters, Moosehead beer, and — if possible — a Screech-in ceremony.

But Boyce ran into a significant problem when he tried to set it up; he couldn’t find any Screech.

“Cod is a dime a dozen here, but like I said, Screech is beyond our reach,” he said. “I don’t know if it’ll be a Canadian cod, but it’ll be some kind of cod.”

It seems you can’t get Screech in China.

Then, Boyce heard that Premier Kathy Dunderdale was embarking on a trade mission to China, and he tried to line up his delivery that way — maybe somebody could stick a bottle in their luggage or something.

“I was hoping to find someone, anyone, to bring a bottle of Screech to us,” he said. “I’ve tried in Hong Kong. I’ve tried in Beijing. I’ve emailed the premier’s office.”

­­­Dunderdale, coincidentally, flew to China Thursday for an eight-day mission to promote partnerships in oil and gas and mining. Nothing in the government’s news release announcing the trip indicated whether Dunderdale will also conduct any rum-based diplomacy.

Boyce said he didn’t receive a reply to his email.

The Telegram contacted Dunderdale’s office and didn’t get a response, either.

When The Telegram reached out to the NLC, it seemed like all hope was lost.

                                                                                                                    Continued on page 2...

Organizations: NLC, Newfoundland and Labrador Liquor

Geographic location: Beijing, China, Canada Moosehead Hong Kong New England Newfoundland

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Recent comments

  • J Boyce
    June 22, 2013 - 03:15

    Thanks to James McLeod, The Telegram and NLC for helping us out in Beijing. I'm looking forward to sharing some Screech -- and poutine, Moosehead, PEI oysters and lots more -- with my Chinese friends and fellow expatriates here. If anyone is interested in seeing what else Canucks in Beijing will be serving for Canada Day here, check this list: All the best to everyone on July 1. Cheers, Boyce

  • Yin Leung
    June 21, 2013 - 14:09

    Spend a lot of time in China, do you Robert? Oh, please tell us more about your keen insight into this culture that doesn't have a clue about the rest of the world, Robert. They must be sooooo ignorant! I can't stand ignorance.

  • Robert
    June 21, 2013 - 11:53

    There is a reason, you can't get screech in CHINA, a reason they don't have a clue about the rest of the world ... IT:S COMMUNIST CHINA .... and an 8 day trade mission .... What a joke .... it's not called trade when you send all our raw materials to a place like that ... and all we get back is their junk .... Every time I hear of a government official going to do business in that hellhole , I picture them selling our souls to the devil .... Why do people ( governments ) insist on dealing with such a place ?

    • Paul
      July 01, 2013 - 19:46

      Have you ever been to China? I spent 10 years in Asia and though it isn't perfect neither is Canada. I am sure in your home you none of "their junk" like electronics, clothing, appliances, etc.

  • david
    June 21, 2013 - 10:09

    The highest liquor prices in all of Canada, and this is what they spend their time and effort doing...thanks NLLC! You're a real peach! Gouge us all as if we are simpletons, spend the money on underworked, surly employees and electronic wine-tasting dispensers (oooooh!), and turn your attention to more "interesting" things than improving your gawd awful, government-dictated "service".

    • Chantal
      June 21, 2013 - 13:07

      Actually, I've found the employees very knowledgeable, freindly, and extremely helpful. I suspect you take your snooty, miserable, holier-than-thou attitude in there and talk down to them. You only get what you put out.

    • david
      June 21, 2013 - 19:42

      Wow Chantal is pleased with the incompetent, overpaid, unionized goombahs at NLLC...what a surprise! Newfoundland "excellence".

  • Christine Doyle
    June 21, 2013 - 09:53

    From me personal, I think it's a great idea, Been a Newfie myself, why not introduce our traditions to other parts of the world, I think it will go over quiet well and everyone will be sure to enjoy, everyone that my family and I have screeched-in over the years I must say a good time was had by all, as the old saying goes, there's no party like a Newfie party lol.

    • willyschilly
      June 24, 2013 - 14:28

      BEING a newfie ???

  • Corrinea Jones
    June 21, 2013 - 08:42

    Fantastic, I was so happy to read that the screech is on the way, Happy Canada Day from Newfoundland

  • wavy
    June 21, 2013 - 08:21

    Didn't receive a reply to his email? You don't say! I've emailed my MHA, Terry French, four times in three years regarding various issues in our district and haven't gotten a single reply confirmation of receipt or so much as a bare minimum "thank you for your email, we'll look into it". Nothing. I have no idea if he ever saw my email. It's beyond bad etiquette, it's offensive. If you didn't read the news and know better, you'd swear govt. didn't check or use email. What are they all carrying Blackberries for, I wonder?, he asked facetiously. I guess if there's nothing in it for them, they don't bother. Great representation, wha? Guess who didn't get my vote in the last election? Sigh....moving the article; rum diplomacy and booze currency in general are wonderful things, aren't they? Passing the "peace pipe" does wonders for international relations as well, as I'm sure the people of The Netherlands, Denver, Oregon and California have discovered.