TORONTO, Jan. 8, 2015 /CNW/ - Ontario's small breweries continue to embrace changes at the Beer Store that will give them access to thousands of new customers in their local community.
Yesterday, the Beer Store announced that small brewers that sell under one million litres of beer a year at the Beer Store will get to list two beers in the five beer stores nearest their brewery for free. Brewers will also save money because of changes that will allow them to swap out a new or existing brand listing and replace it with a seasonal brand twice a year. Ontario brewers can enjoy these benefits regardless of whether they take up the new offer to become owners of the Beer Store for as little as $100.
Here's what small brewers are saying:
"We didn't expect this news but we welcome it. It gives us access to a market that we're kind of shut out of." - Andrew Peters, Forked River Brewing Co., January 8, 2015, London Free Press (http://www.lfpress.com/2015/01/07/beer-store-opens-door-to-small-brewers)
"If we can get shelf space at The Beer Store, that would make it work. This way, the LCBO won't be the only place to go for craft beer. A lot of people are looking for that." --James Grant, Blue Elephant Craft Beer House, January 8, 2015, Simcoe Reformer (http://www.simcoereformer.ca/2015/01/07/norfolk-brewers-see-opportunity-to-expand)
"So for us to actually open up and have more outlets to be able to sell our beer in, then the better...In taking those listing fees and the per-store fees out, it definitely makes it worthwhile." - David Reed, Forked River Brewing Co., January 7, 2015, CTV2-TV London
"John Picard, owner of Ramblin' Road [Brewery Farm], says a lot of questions have to be answered before he makes any commitments. However, he said the opportunity to get his product into local Beer Stores is attractive. That would require an investment in trucks and drivers while generating additional administration costs. 'Ultimately, in order to grow, you need accessibility. Not everyone is going to drive to your brewery,' Picard said. 'If they are going to offer you five Beer Stores, you have to look at that. It's inevitable that we'll have to go to a larger distribution network.'" - January 8, 2014, Simcoe Reformer (http://www.simcoereformer.ca/2015/01/07/norfolk-brewers-see-opportunity-to-expand)
"The fact that there's been some recognition that there are some opportunities to work with the smaller breweries is a huge step forward, so I'm happy about that." - Jeff Carefoote, Amsterdam Brewing Co., January 8, 2015, Globe and Mail online (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/small-business/sb-marketing/sales/why-beer-store-changes-missed-the-mark-for-craft-brewers/article22360213/)
Ontarians also support the changes to the Beer Store that will deliver more selection at the same low prices. A Pollara Strategic Insights poll of 526 Ontarians conducted January 7, 2015, found that 80% of Ontarians believed the changes would be good for Ontario-based brewers. (http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1469857/4-in-5-ontarians-approve-of-the-fairness-of-the-beer-store-s-open-ownership-offer)
For more information on the Beer Store's new era, go to Ontario Beer Facts at www.ontariobeerfacts.ca
SOURCE The Beer Store
For further information: Bill Walker, firstname.lastname@example.org, 416-624-3936