Ontario Craft Brewers response to beer in grocery store concept

Legislated Affordability and Shelf Space are Crucial

TORONTO, March 13, 2015 /CNW/ - Ontario Craft Brewers today responded to a Toronto Star report that large supermarkets may be permitted to sell beer and wine. OCB is getting many calls for a response to this article. Our basic position on improved retail access remains the same as what we have previously stated in other releases – see here http://www.ontariocraftbrewers.com/press-releases/ocb_position_RetailAccess.php

Here are some added comments:

Says John Hay, President of Ontario Craft Brewers: "OCB appreciates the effort that Government and others are putting into the discussion of improving retail access for Ontario Craft Brewers. As we have said many times, improved access for Ontario Craft Beer will accelerate our job creation ability and solidify the establishment of craft breweries across the Province. It also will be welcomed by Ontario consumers. There are many ways to structure increased retail access and we will continue to work with Government on this and follow the process they have laid out."

According to Cam Heaps, co-founder of Steam Whistle Brewing and Chair of Ontario Craft Brewers, "A key aspect for Craft Brewers is that any new access, whatever form it takes, is affordable and that it does not allow large players to purchase all of the shelf space. Shelf space fees are illegal in many US states for that very reason."

"Markups and other in-store requirements need to be established in law; otherwise, it confers far too much power on yet another series of monopolies," says John Hay. "Similarly, we do not want to be trapped in the distribution system of any large players. Our right to direct deliver is crucial to maintain because it gives us a degree of independence and allows us a stronger negotiating position with other players."

Ontario Craft Brewers: Discover the Difference. http://www.ontariocraftbrewers.com
Ontario Craft Brewers is an association of over 50 small brewers dedicated to making great tasting, high quality beer in Ontario. Ontario Craft Brewers brew their beers locally using fresh, all natural ingredients in communities throughout Ontario - from the Ottawa Valley to Windsor and Niagara to Muskoka and as far north as Kenora. Handcrafting over 450 premium beers, Ontario Craft Brewers employ well over 1,000 people in Ontario, accounting for over 30 per cent of the direct brewing industry jobs in the province. As of 2013, Ontario's Craft Brewers' share for premium priced brands was almost 4% of the beer volume sold. Craft beer continues to be the fastest growing segment within the LCBO's beer category. The OCB's long term vision is to make Ontario a North American Centre of Excellence for Craft Brewing. Funding provided by the government of Ontario. Please discover responsibly.

SOURCE Ontario Craft Brewers

For further information: Media Contact: Christine Mulkins, 647-242-3686


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