Queen’s Park – Green Party of Ontario leader Mike Schreiner issued the following statement in response to Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa’s announcement regarding a new pilot project to open LCBO express stores in large retailers across the province:
“I’m disappointed that the Liberal government continues to support the foreign beer store monopoly. It’s ridiculous that the Liberals persist in enabling big beer to have an unfair advantage over our local craft breweries. In addition to new LCBO outlets, the government should allow local craft breweries to open retail stores and cooperate on wholesale distribution.
Under current laws craft breweries can only sell retail over the counter at the brewery itself. And they are unable to cooperate on distribution and need to duplicate efforts to service restaurants. This is a waste of time and money, and it creates an uneven playing field for local craft brewers.
The Beer Store’s monopoly needs to be broken up to create a fair playing field, foster local jobs in the craft brewing industry, and offer more choice to consumers. I will continue to push the government to support our local craft breweries. I will push the government to
change legislation to allow craft breweries to cooperate on distribution and to open Craft Beer Stores.” For the Silo, Amy Watson.