Artist's rendering of what a liquor store within a grocery store might look like.

Artist's rendering of what a liquor store within a grocery store might look like.
Artist's rendering of what a liquor store within a grocery store might look like.

Big box retailers and convenience stores will not be allowed to sell alcohol

The B.C. government has announced new details for the sale of all types of liquor in grocery stores, starting in spring 2015. Grocery stores of a minimum 10,000 square feet (for reference, the Urban Fare stores in downtown Vancouver are around 20,000 square feet) that generate 75 per cent of their sales from food products will be allowed to sell beer, wine and liquor. 

Grocery stores will have the opportunity to operate liquor stores "within a store": a separate space with a controlled access point and separate till. Big box and convenience stores, however, will be ineligible to sell liquor.

 “Shoppers told us they wanted to be able to grab a bottle of wine along with their evening groceries on their way home from work—and this framework fits the bill,” said MLA John Yap, the provincial government's appointed representative leading the liquor policy reform review.