July 23rd, 2024

Ford won’t budge on plan to have ready-to-drink cocktails sold in corner stores


By The Canadian Press on July 10, 2024.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford carries a case of beer during a photo-op at Cool Beer Brewing Company in Toronto, on Wednesday, July 10, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston

TORONTO – Ontario Premier Doug Ford says he will not budge from his plan to have ready-to-drink cocktails sold at convenience and grocery stores across the province.

Workers at the Liquor Control Board of Ontario went on strike last week and their union says wages are not the issue, rather they oppose Ford’s alcohol expansion plan.

Grocery stores that already sell beer and wine will be able to sell ready-to-drink cocktails starting Aug. 1, and convenience stores can start selling beer, wine, cider and ready-to-drink cocktails on Sept. 5.

Previous rounds of expanding the alcohol market in Ontario have kept spirits sales in the hands of the LCBO, and the Ontario Public Service Employees Union believes that the next step will threaten their workers’ jobs and the existence of the LCBO.

But Ford says today that he will not reconsider including ready-to-drink cocktails in his expansion plans, saying the ship has sailed.

He urges OPSEU to get back to the bargaining table.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 10, 2024.

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