LCBO "agency stores" in Northern Ontario

…Norm Sterling unveiled 12 proposed communities to host new “LCBO agency stores.

News Release
January 31, 2002

LCBO "agency stores" in Northern Ontario
Ministry of Consumer and Business Services


TORONTO — January 31, 2002 — Today, as part of an effort to improve customer service in underserviced rural communities and tourist areas, Consumer and Business Services Minister Norm Sterling unveiled 12 proposed communities to host new “LCBO agency stores”. At the Ontario government’s request, the crown-owned Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) is expanding the “LCBO agency” system with new stores scheduled to open within the next couple of months.

“Until now, too many small towns didn’t get LCBO service because they couldn’t support the overhead of a full-sized LCBO store. With our go-ahead to offer agencies through existing retailers in smaller markets, we’ll improve service in rural downtowns for residents and visitors alike, while preserving the LCBO’s social responsibility standards,” Sterling said.

Locations were chosen from a pool of communities that had either made requests for an LCBO agency store to their local MPP or the LCBO, or towns proposed by nearby LCBO managers. The first 12 were then selected after considering several weighted factors, including proximity to other liquor services.

While service access is the program’s first goal, the economic benefits are also expected to be positive. “With increased service, rural consumers have another reason to stay in their region to shop with local retailers,” Sterling said. “The LCBO’s experience with agency stores has proven that this model can be a safe, reliable and cost-effective way to deliver service to remote or rural communities.”

Each agency will:

-offered to existing retail stores already in communities
-stock a product selection tailored to local market needs
-not be awarded if the municipality opposes the agency store
-be monitored by LCBO staff to verify compliance with social responsibility rules (e.g. no sales to minors)

Communities that are eligible for consideration (and vicinity):

Algoma Mills
Murillo / Kakabeka Falls
Port Sydney
Redbridge / Balsam Creek
Rosseau Road / Hayes Corners / Horseshoe
Severn Falls

The Liquor Control Act gives the LCBO the authority to establish agency sale of liquor to the public.
Currently, Minister Sterling is midway through announcements across the province to expand the agency store system.

For information on applying for an agency store, please call Marisa Kraus in LCBO Retail Planning at

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