Convenience U

Convenience U
CARWACS

February 23, 2005 11:18 ET

Convenience Stores Toasting Idea of Alcohol Sales: Alcohol sale to be discussed at Convenience U


NEWS RELEASE TRANSMITTED BY CCNMatthews

FOR: CONVENIENCE U

AND CARWACS

FEBRUARY 23, 2005 - 11:18 ET

Convenience Stores Toasting Idea of Alcohol Sales:
Alcohol sale to be discussed at Convenience U

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Feb. 23, 2005) - The prospect of
selling alcohol products has many Ontario convenience store retailers
feeling optimistic. With tobacco sales increasingly hampered by strict
advertising and promotion restrictions, alcohol sales are being viewed
as a potential source for increasing store revenues. The benefits and
issues regarding alcohol sales will be discussed at the Convenience U
(www.convenienceu.ca) and CARWACS (www.carwacs.com) convenience, gas and
car wash convention and conference, March 1, 2 and 3, 2005 at the
Toronto Congress Centre.

Since the original discussions of David Peterson's Liberal government in
the late 1980s regarding modifications to liquor laws, many changes have
taken place - seven day a week shopping, 24 hour access to grocery
stores, the opening of approximately 250 wine stores across Ontario as
well as over 200 LCBO agency stores which are located in convenience
stores in rural Ontario.

"The marketplace has evolved to a point where consumers are ready for
the extra added benefit of alcohol in convenience stores," says Ontario
Convenience Store Association (OCSA) Executive Director Dave Bryans.

Convenience stores, equipped with age restriction programs in place for
tobacco and lottery sales, are also looking forward to the possibility
of a new category. The OCSA stands firmly behind the idea that
regulations have to be in place and only certified retailers should be
allowed to sell alcohol products.

"We are interested in possibly implementing the Smart Serve program or
similar one so that alcohol isn't sold to an underage person," says
Bryans. "We encourage the Ontario government to consider a revision to
the drivers licence to include some visual marker indicating the licence
holder is under 19, making it easier to check the customer's age."

The OCSA believes that allowing convenience store owners the opportunity
to sell alcohol products will not have any detrimental effects on
society. Studies conducted in provinces that allow convenience store
alcohol sales show no significant increase in crime. Thefts and
robberies are seen to be linked to tobacco products, as they are easier
to steal than the heavier and bulkier alcohol products.

On March 4, 2005, the OCSA will be making a submission before the
government appointed review board on behalf of all convenience stores in
Ontario.

The Convenience U and CARWACS convention and conference is produced by
Fulcrum Events Inc. in association with Your Convenience Manager (YCM),
Canada's leading magazine for the convenience industry and
Conveniencecentral.ca. It is the only show of its kind endorsed by the
Ontario Convenience Store Association (OCSA).

About Convenience U

Convenience U, produced by Fulcrum Events Inc. (www.fulcrum.ca), held
its first 'school of convenience retailing' in 2004. It is an event
designed to bring together retailers, suppliers, distributors and
leading industry representatives to discuss issues facing the
convenience store industry and offer innovative solutions for success.
For additional information visit www.convenienceu.ca.

About CARWACS

Purchased by Fulcrum Events Inc. in 2004, CARWACS trade show for the
carwash and petroleum industry is the only event of its kind in Canada,
targeting suppliers, independent operators and chain representatives. It
is an opportunity for carwash and petroleum operators to come together
for its eighth year and discover the latest trends and techniques in the
industry. For additional information visit www.carwacs.com

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Contact Information

  • FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
    Sacke & Associates Inc.
    Margaret Antkowski
    (416) 493-5723, ext 204
    margareta@sackepr.com