A BC Liquor Store. (Wikimedia Commons)

BC Liquor Stores closing on Sundays, seeing skyrocketing sales amid COVID-19

Stores are taking extra hygiene measures to reduce transmission

Provincial liquor stores in B.C. will be closing on Sundays due to staffing and sanitizing challenges brought about by COVID-19.

BC Liquor Distribution Branch spokesperson Viviana Zanocco said the change will help the organization deal with a “finite number of employees and keep up with hygiene requirements.”

The stores already switched to shortened hours last week, Zanocco noted, with Monday to Saturday hours now from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The Sunday closures will begin this week on March 29.

The enhanced hygiene measures include asking customers to bag their own alcohol, if they are using reusable bags, and installing plexiglass shields for their cashiers.

“It’s just one extra measures of protection for employees and customers,” Zanocco said of the new checkout procedures. Other measures include signs warning people to physically distance and floor markers, to show people where to stand, for checkouts.

Although the branch has seen a drop in hospitality sector sales, as it’s not supplying many shut-down bars and restaurants, Zanocco said business is booming.

“Our sales are up 40 per cent this month,” she said, noting it’s an “unprecedented” increase.

The biggest spikes are for large-volume items: cask wine is up 144 per cent, spirits in 1.75-litre or larger bottles are up 153 per cent and 24-packs of beer are up 120 per cent.

Zanocco said although store hours and days may be limited throughout the COVID-19 crisis, not to fear that stores will close fully: BC Liquor Stores have been deemed an essential service by the province.

“Supply is very, very steady,” she said.

READ MORE: BC Liquor Stores to remain open, for now, despite COVID-19

READ MORE: B.C. bans ‘shameful black market’ of food, medical supplies; limits buying quantities


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: North Islanders bang pots and pans to honour essential workers

‘Hopefully we can keep it going for them because these people are showing up at work every day for us’

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: Juvenile eagle

‘I was able to drive up close to it and get a few pictures without getting out of the truck’

Port Hardy Secondary School’s 2019-2020 wrestling season

Both Lamothe and Speck thanked Cleary for volunteering his time to sponsor the program.

First government licensed cannabis shop on Vancouver Island celebrates one year in business

‘I’m really happy we’re here giving the public what they want’

Fire Chefs give back to community with one free meal a day to those who are in need

Fire Chefs will offer one free meal from 3:30 until 4:30 on the days they are open to those in need.

‘We will get through this’: B.C. sees new COVID-19 death, but 57% have recovered

A total of 1,066 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

Couple celebrates 61st anniversary through Vancouver Island seniors’ home window

Frank and Rena Phillips marked occasion at Nanaimo Seniors Village this week while social distancing

A look at some of the B.C. inventors creating life-saving tools in fight against COVID-19

Groups across B.C. are working together to create what they hope will help people affected by the pandemic

Association launches French-language games, online tools for families learning at home

Games, culture and vocabulary included in new virtual resources

‘There can be no ambiguity’: Travellers brought home to B.C. must self-isolate

Health Minister Adrian Dix said the mandatory isolation must be abided by

Belle from ‘Beauty and the Beast’ entertains home-bound kids in Cowichan Bay

Alora Killam, 16, played the part in musical two years ago

55+ BC Games cancelled amid COVID-19 concerns

Greater Victoria set to host 2021 event

BC Hydro offers three-month bill ‘holiday’ for those affected by COVID-19

Industrial customers can defer half of their power bills

Some April Fool’s Day jokes bring much-needed laughter; others tone deaf to COVID-19

Police are warning the public not to use the ongoing pandemic as a punchline

Most Read