Students at McGill University in Montréal will notice a big change come fall semester this year, and frosh looking to swill back Export, Canadian and Molson Dry will have to pack it from home.

The Student Society of McGill University (SSMU) was looking to sign a new deal this summer with Molson, the hometown brewing giant that had been the university’s beer supplier for several years.

Roz Freeman, SSMU vice-president of communications and events, sat down with representatives from Sleeman and Labbatt before settling on Boreale and McAuslan.

Molson was noticeably absent from the discussions.

Freeman is pleased by the customer service that the smaller breweries are able to provide, even if they do not have as much cash money to throw at McGill events.

So far, students have taken to the beer fairly well, although there has been some grumbling from die-hard Molson drinkers. Luckily, most of the grumbling happens with a Boreale or McAuslan beer in hand regardless of student discontent.

Some students fear that the move was good for the short term but perhaps not so much in the long run. Freeman, however, says that as her job turns over every year, she felt she had to make the strongest decision possible for the time she was there. So far, things have worked out in her favour.

Here in the Yukon, it is much the same situation. The Yukon Brewing Company enjoys the geographical advantage of being able to run out and provide support for our clients at a moment’s notice. This in itself is a large part of the reason we outsell the major Canadian breweries on tap here in the Yukon.

Providing a local beer to a market that hinges very much on tourism is a great selling point when we look for bars, restaurants and other licensees who could potentially profit from selling more of our beers as opposed to a Molson or Labbatt offering.

Although the bigger breweries can boast huge marketing and promotion budgets, we, like McAuslan’s and Boreale, still take pride in being closer to the customer.

This column is courtesy of the Yukon Brewing Company, an organization that takes advantage of the old real estate maxim: Location, location, location.