TORONTO — Thirteen grocery stores and chains across Ontario have been chosen to sell beer as the Liberal government aims to have up to 60 locations selling suds by the end of the year.
The province has released a list of grocery stores it selected as the winning bidders. They must now apply to the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario for licences in specific locations.
The government won't say at this stage of the process where precisely the stores are located, but say they upheld a commitment to ensure every region of the province is represented.
Ontario has previously announced there would be 25 in the Greater Toronto Area, 16 in western Ontario, 13 in the eastern reaches of the province and six in the North, split between large and small grocers.
Within three years, the government's goal is to have beer sold at up to 450 grocery store locations across the province.
A 10-year agreement between the government and foreign-owned Brewers Retail, which owns 447 Beer Store outlets, will keep the same prices wherever beer is sold.
The Beer Store has enjoyed a virtual monopoly on retailing beer in Ontario since prohibition was repealed nearly 90 years ago.
The grocery stores approved by the government to apply to the AGCO for licences are:
— Coppa's Fresh Market, with locations in the Greater Toronto Area
— Farm Boy 2012 Inc., with locations across the province
— Galleria Supermarket, in the Greater Toronto Area
— Hanahreuem Mart Inc., with locations in the Greater Toronto Area
— J & B La Mantia Ltd., in Lindsay, Ont.
— Loblaws Inc., with locations across the province
— Longo Brothers Fruit Market Inc., with locations in the Greater Toronto Area
— Metro Ontario Inc., with locations across the province
— Michael-Angelos Market Place Inc., in the Greater Toronto Area
— Pino's Get Fresh, in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
— Sobeys Capital Incorporated, with locations across the province
— Starsky Fine Foods Hamilton Inc.
— Wal-Mart Canada Corp., with locations across the province
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