LCBO Monopoly

New report calls for end to Ontario booze monopolies

The debate over alcohol sales in Ontario has heated up today thanks to a report from the C.D. Howe Institute that suggests a more competitive marketplace would benefit both consumers and the government's bottom line. Titled "Uncorking a Strange Brew: The Need for More Competition in Ontario's Alcoholic Beverage Retailing System," it recommends that wine and beer sales be allowed in grocery and corner stores and that licences be given to new wine retailers and off-winery stores.

"These changes would increase the choices available and reduce prices for Ontario consumers, as well as improve the competitiveness of Ontario's smaller wineries and breweries and generate more revenue for the government," the study reads.

The right-leaning C.D. Howe Institute is not the first to suggest the reform of liquor sales in the province. A 2005 government-requested report made similar recommendations, though it was ultimately disregarded by the Liberals at the time. Even as Ontario looks to slightly expand the sale of booze, it could be the same fate for this report despite all the talk that it will generate.


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