Sales at BC Liquor Store were up 40 per cent for the month of March. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

B.C. liquor, cannabis sales up in March, now levelled off to seasonal norms

Sale figures are not released, but percentages show huge percentage increases

When the province declared a state of emergency to support the COVID-19 response in mid-March, BC Liquor Stores (BCLS) saw an ‘uncharacteristic’ increase in customer volume.

“The trend was similar to the increased activity experienced by grocery stores,” a Ministry of Attorney General spokesperson told the Tribune.

Sales figures for BC Liquor Stores (BCLS) or BC Cannabis Stores (BBCS) are not released as those statistics are considered confidential business information, however the ministry provided an outline of sales across the province.

Over the last two weeks of March cask wine sales increased by 144 per cent, sales of spirits sold in 1.75 litre containers increased by 153 per cent, sales of beer sold in 24 packs increased by 120 per cent and counter sales at BCLS were up 40 per cent for the month of March.

Since the end of March, sales have levelled off to seasonal norms.

READ MORE: B.C. premier hosts free virtual concert to bring people together amid COVID-19

Over the same period, BC Cannabis Stores have also experienced an increase in sales across both its network of retail stores and on its ecommerce channel.

“As we continue to support customers in safely accessing non-medical cannabis products, BC Cannabis Stores has implemented a number of changes to its services during the COVID-19 pandemic in line with orders and advice from Dr. Bonnie Henry, the Provincial Health Officer,” the spokesperson noted.

One such change is the addition of an in-store call and collect service, which enables customers to call ahead to reserve product, and pick it up in-store, limiting the length of time required to be in the store.

On Wednesday, the provincial government extended retail liquor service in B.C. in a move to “provide greater opportunities for physical distancing for seniors and people who are immuno-compromised.

“Liquor retailers, such as wine stores or private liquor stores, throughout the province are now allowed to temporarily operate between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. daily, if they choose to do so,” the Ministry of Attorney General said in a news statement.

The new policies are effective immediately and will remain in effect until July 15, 2020. These changes do not override any additional requirements or limitations placed on businesses regarding hours of liquor service by local governments or First Nations.

READ MORE: COVID-19: B.C. allows private liquor stores to open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Commercial plaza proposed for Rocky Creek and Ludlow intersection

Town Council directed the application proceed for further consideration

Symphony pop-up concerts coming to Saltair

Only 40 tickets available so get them soon if you’re interested

South Wellington Elementary demolition not taking place next school year

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public School trustees vote against razing south-end school in 2020/21

One piper piping during the pandemic

Tribute to health care workers reaches the 100th performance

Town of Ladysmith receives $3.3 million grant for Arts & Heritage Hub

The funds will go to creating artist studios around the Machine Shop and maintaining heritage assets

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

We’re asking you to lock arms with us, as we look to better days ahead

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Vancouver Island business ad unintentionally features OK gesture linked to white supremacy

Innocuous ‘OK’ gesture in cleaning franchise advertisement gets flak on social media for ‘supposedly’ promoting white supremacy

Minivan driver’s speed a factor in fatal 2018 Malahat crash

Driver was travelling at 110 km/h in a construction zone

Comox Valley RCMP looking for missing woman

Ami Guthrie was last seen in Courtenay in early July

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Most Read