Vancouverites are treating alcohol as an “essential service” during the the COVID-19 pandemic and now it is official.

In consultation with B.C.’s provincial health officer, the Province has defined essential services British Columbians rely on in their daily lives and retail outlets that sell liquor made the cut.

That being said, effective Sunday, March 29th, liquor stores will reducing store hours and closing on Sundays.

According to numbers provided by the provincial government, sales at BC Liquor Stores are up, way up. Overall counter sales at BC Liquor Stores have gone up 40% for the month.

And shoppers are clearly changing the way they buy. In an effort to be out less and keep their social distance, shoppers are buying bigger and buying more.

Over the last two weeks cask wine sales at government-run stores across the province have increased by 144%. Sales of spirits sold in the 1.75 litre bottles have gone up by 153%, while sales of beer in cases of 24 have increased 120%.

“So, anything you can buy in a larger volume,” said Viviana Zanocco of the BC Liquor Distribution Branch. “Anything that can see people through, so that they don’t have to go out and buy again for a few weeks.”

Private liquor stores are seeing similar increases. Speaking of which, Okanagan Estate Wine Cellars on West 1st Avenue in Kitsilano received the shipment pictured above just in time for this news.

Last modified: April 3, 2020

Comments are closed.