Sun News, August 2012
Ontario’s beer and wine drinkers are spending like drunken sailors on locally made products. And that’s good news for the LCBO.
The provincial booze agency sold more locally-made beer and Ontario wine in 2011-2012 than in any other year.
“Consumers are trading up to premium products. They aren’t buying more, they are buying better,” LCBO spokeswoman Julie Rosenberg said.
Sales of suds made by Ontario Craft brewers grew 45% and sales of VQA table wines increased by 9%. The LCBO’s sales increased last year by 4.9% to $4.7 billion.
The government’s net income jumped 6.3%, or $98 million, to $1.658 billion.
In the past 10 years the province has received $13 billion in dividends from the LCBO.
The LCBO is working on its largest store expansion ever over the next two years by opening up to 70 new outlets in the province.
“(The) government is committed to supporting the Ontario wine and beer industries,” Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan said. “The LCBO’s store expansion will generate positive financial return for our province, while expanding jobs at craft breweries and wineries and improving services for our Ontario customers.”
In 2011-2012, the LCBO opened 13 new stores, which generated $14.5 million in additional sales. The LCBO currently has 620 outlets in Ontario.