Artist's rendering of a separate liquor store space attached to a grocery store.

Big-box stores excluded from liquor sales

Stores must be at least 10,000 square feet with most sales from groceries, Justice Minister Suzanne Anton says

VICTORIA – Large grocery stores are the only retailers eligible to add a separate liquor store under new B.C. government regulations set to take effect in the spring of 2015.

To qualify for a space to sell alcoholic beverages, stores must have at least 929 square metres (10,000 square feet) of floor space and groceries as 75 per cent of their sales, Justice Minister Suzanne Anton announced Friday.

The restrictions are designed to exclude general merchandise and “big box” stores as well as convenience stores, according to a ministry statement. Eligible stores will be permitted to create a “store within a store” with separate cash registers and staff, or “co-brand” with liquor stores outside their existing facilities.

The government plans to maintain its cap on the number of liquor stores, with 670 private stores now in operation. Liquor stores are currently restricted to relocating no more than five km from their original location, but that restriction is being lifted so a licence can be sold or moved anywhere in the province.

That would allow existing government or private liquor stores to relocate in partnership with grocery stores, while maintaining the regulation that no two liquor outlets can be closer together than one kilometre.

Licensing to sell B.C. wine directly from grocery store shelves, a second recommendation from a province-wide consultation on liquor policy reform conducted earlier this year, is still being studied.

Anton said the system “strikes a balance of added convenience for consumers and support for B.C.’s business sector, while at the same time respecting health and public safety considerations.”

 

Just Posted

Ferry connecting Port Hardy and Bella Coola expected to set sail this summer

Its first in-service route will sail in central coast waters on May 18, 2019.

BC Parks Student Ranger Program accepting applications for 2019 season

12 crews of four student rangers will work in regions throughout the province including Bella Coola.

Over $650,00 given to rural communities thanks to Rural Dividends

Five communities, including Williams Lake, are receiving $10,000 for project grants

Pregnant Cariboo firefighter tries to save own house from blaze

Julia Flinton and Anthony Sellars both worked on the 2017 wildfires

Road report for Highway 20

Fog patches and slippery sections; Drive BC

REPLAY: B.C’s best videos this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week across the province

Patriots make 3rd straight Super Bowl, beat Chiefs 37-31 in OT

New England will meet L.A. Rams in NFL title game

Pettersson returns to lead Canucks to 3-2 win over Red Wings

Vancouver’s super rookie has 2 points in first game back after knee injury

Skaters stranded in Saint John, NB, amid storm on last day of championships

More than half of the flights out of the city’s airport were cancelled due to the weather

Call for tighter bail rules after Saudi sex-crime suspect vanishes

Mohammed Zuraibi Alzoabi was facing charges related to alleged sexual assault, criminal harassment, assault and forcible confinement of a woman

12 poisoned eagles found on Vancouver Island

Improper disposal of euthanized animal suspected

Olympic softball qualifier to be held in B.C.

Tournament is to be held Aug. 25 to Sept. 1

B.C. resident creates global sport training program

The 20 hour course teaches the science and application of interval training at the university level

B.C. VIEWS: Fact-checking the NDP’s speculation tax on empty homes

Negative-option billing is still legal for governments

Most Read