• April 8, 2014 9:59 AM

Convenience stores would "upcharge" Ontarians for beer: Bryans

TORONTO, April 8, 2014 /CNW/ - The CEO of the Ontario Convenience Stores Association (OCSA) has once again revealed that convenience stores would hike the price of beer if they gain the ability to sell alcohol.  
 
When asked what impact allowing convenience stores to sell beer would have on prices, OCSA CEO Dave Bryans told Rob Snow's Afternoon Edition on Ottawa radio station 580 CFRA on Monday afternoon: "If there is an upcharge, it's because of the convenience factor, after hours and later in the day." 
 
Bryans made the comment when responding to the new Beer Store ad campaign, launched Monday. The ad, now running on television across Ontario, highlights the Beer Store's responsible sales program, in which employees challenge 3.6 million people who appear underage or intoxicated. 
 
This isn't the first time Bryans has highlighted convenience stores' plans to charge Ontarians more for their beer.  
 
On February 10, when asked about beer prices going up, Bryans told Global News, "Yes, you would probably pay more for convenience because of location, because of hours of service..." 
 
And he told the Toronto Sun on February 9: "The Ontario Convenience Stores Association has never advocated that we were going to offer cheap beer to anybody." 
 
Jeff Newton, President of Canada's National Brewers, said the Beer Store provides a responsible, competitive and accessible retail network to supply Ontarians with over 400 beer brands supplied by 100 brewers.

"Convenience stores now admit that if they gain the ability to sell alcohol, prices would go up.  That's what happened in Alberta and British Columbia after they deregulated their alcohol retail systems," Mr. Newton said. "Using the word 'upcharge' is just code for the price hikes that  convenience stores would implement — price hikes that would gouge consumers across the province." 
 

SOURCE Canada's National Brewers

For further information: To co-ordinate interviews, contact: Jay Armitage, 416-917-0489, jay.armitage@fleishman.ca; Justin Häne, 416-645-8184, Justin.Hane@fleishman.ca