The Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) is telling customers to “shop early” and “be flexible” during the holidays this year amid supply chain issues.
In a statement sent to Global News, Nick Nanos, the LCBO chief supply chain officer, said the stores will still have a “great selection” of international products and local beer, wine, and spirits.
But Nanos advised customers that they should try to buy what they’d like early and if their preferred item is not in stock, try something new.
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“Our knowledgeable employees are available in-store to help make alternative choices and we offer a reminder of our convenient online shopping options,” Nanos said.
“Our customers’ continued patience should they notice occasional product unavailability is appreciated.”
The LCBO previously warned of supply chain issues earlier this fall, including with regards to shipping containers, which have accounted for around a third of the LCBO’s stock shortages.
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“As we get into the busiest time of year, there will be naturally some products that are in higher demand that others and with all the global supply chain issues that are happening around the world, it’s not really surprising that some products may go in and out of stock,” said Andrew Von Teichman, the president of Drinks Ontario, a provincial trade association.
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“You’re possibly going to see products that you normally would like to have not there necessarily at the right time and that may just be on that day in that store where it’s just not on the shelf, but it also could be tied to the supply chain issues.
“So I would say the big message for consumers in Ontario is just be patient and be open-minded, looking for other products in a similar category that might be new to you, but exciting to try.”
Teichman said champagne and sparkling products in particular may be in short supply during the holidays.
He added that this could be a good opportunity to try products from local suppliers as they may have less difficulty in getting to shelves.
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