AGLC updates policies to expand opportunities for businesses and choices for customers
Beginning December 14, 2020, retail liquor stores can offer virtual tastings, and liquor-licensed restaurants, bars and lounges (Class A liquor licensees) can provide the same drinks on their in-house menu to consumers through delivery or take-out.
These changes are part of AGLC’s work to streamline, modernize and remove policies in the Liquor Licensee Handbook, which eases current regulatory requirements while promoting responsible consumption and new opportunities for businesses and consumers.
Accommodating off-premises virtual tastings for liquor stores generates additional sales possibilities and helps address limitations related to COVID-19 public health measures, which have reduced the opportunities for licensees to connect with customers (e.g., in-store tastings).
The opportunity for Class A licensees to offer mixed drinks for delivery or take-out also provides additional sales opportunities and enables these businesses to deliver unique offerings to Albertans.
“Now, more than ever, we need to make cutting red tape a top priority. Earlier in the year when we allowed restaurants to sell off-sales they told us it saved their businesses. Today’s announcement will do more to help those same businesses.”
Grant Hunter, Associate Minister of Red Tape Reduction
“These changes reflect AGLC’s commitment to providing Albertans with unique product choices while easing regulatory burden for businesses. While work on these updates began prior to COVID-19, AGLC has made it a top priority to support liquor licensees during the pandemic – and beyond. These updates will stay in place after the pandemic as we continue to work closely with industry to deliver unique offerings to Albertans in a safe and socially responsible way.”
Dave Berry, Vice President, Regulatory Services, AGLC
“AGLC’s decision to expand the liquor menu items available for take-out or delivery to include spirits cocktails made on the premises provides a critical economic lifeline for local neighbourhood bars and restaurants across Alberta – especially during the pandemic. This opportunity supports these local businesses to rehire or retain their bartenders, extend their unique in-dining experience to homes and provides Alberta consumers greater choice and convenience.”
Jan H. Westcott, President & CEO, Spirits Canada
To ensure customers’ safety, licensees can make mixed drinks only once the customer order is received and are required to package drinks in a sealed, tamper-proof container with the contents of the drink clearly identified on the container’s label.
These amendments also ensure products are delivered in a socially responsible manner by including provisions for delivery drivers to have ProServe certification and ensure age verification of the recipient.
As the crown commercial enterprise and agency mandated with overseeing Alberta’s gaming, liquor and cannabis industries, AGLC’s customer-focus demonstrates a deep commitment to a modern regulatory environment that supports consumer choice, innovation and economic growth to better serve Albertans.