Once again, the LCBO posts record sales—which isn’t surprising, given its monopoly

Once again, the LCBO posts record sales—which isn’t surprising, given its monopoly

The Summerhill LCBO or Hogwarts? (Image: -sina- from the Torontolife.com Flickr pool) 

Ontarians love their booze, and the LCBO’s 2011–2012 financial results prove they’ve been buying lots more of it. It’s the 17th year in a row of record sales for the board, with net sales up $218 million or 4.9 per cent over fiscal 2010–2011, totalling a cool $4.7 billion. Of course, that’s not exactly shocking, since the LCBO’s pretty much the only place in town where you can grab a bottle of bourbon or gin, unless you make your own. VQA table wines from Ontario were big winners last year, with an increase in sales of nine per cent, but the big success story is still craft beers. The fact that micro-brews are doing well shouldn’t be surprising, given the attention they’ve been getting from big beer companies, but the bump in sales is still pretty staggering: in the last year, Ontario craft beers led all segments with almost 45 per cent growth. All of this means that the liquor monopoly remitted $1.63 billion to the provincial coffers. With numbers like these, we doubt Queen’s Park would be in a greatf hurry to get rid of the LCBO any time soon.