napoleon wrote:Let them stock what the customer wants. This way the LCBO in rural Ontario doesn't have to stock the exact same products as the one in hipster central in Toronto.
Out of honest curiosity what do you think rural Ontario wants?
You've hit on one of the biggest problems with LCBO:
specialty products sell in small quantities
impossible to stock every store in the province with small quantity products
therefore, inevitably only a few stores (typically Toronto-centric) get them, or they just don't bother importing small quantities
the automatic reaction is that only Toronto hipsters will buy those products, when the REALITY is the same % of rural residents as Toronto residents want to buy them (not just beer but whisky, wine, etc)
Since LCBO is a gov agency, EVERY Ontario resident has the expectation (rightfully so as taxpayers) of same access to every product regardless of where they live in the province. If it were a privatized system, the same expectation would not exist (is there a Porsche dealership in Timmins?). However, a private store would find ways of selling to people outside their geographic area and/or local stores would stock what the locals want!
Solution seems to be online shopping, with either delivery to a local lcbo or direct to home
As Bakagaijin pointed out, apparently some form of online shopping is coming ... given Ontario's archaic liqour laws and LCBO's bungling to previous web updates I'm not very confident the system will be user friendly.