Time to take LCBO merchandising to task.

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Tapsucker
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Time to take LCBO merchandising to task.

Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 5:41 pm

Hello everybody, this is my first post, so if you disagree please be kind and if you agree I encourage you to buy me a round!

I have always enjoyed this site, but am not much of a forum type. A recent trend I have seen has changed that...

I'm sure you have noticed the LCBO recently moving all (or most) of it's micro inventory out into unrefrigerated shelves. The cooler space now seams to be dedicated to pasteurised water (or a facsimile thereof).

I guess they have hired a new MBA in merchandising!

As shareholders and customers, it is time we rise up and fix this stupidity. While it is highly likely they have succumbed to the aggressive marketing payoffs that Inbev and McCoors have used to push many bar taps to turn off competitors, we need to fight back before our only mainstream outlet flushes away chilled and fresh products. Clearly the priority shelf space is being bought by the giants to squeeze out the craft business.

I guess what MBA Jr. and the merchandising team don't realise is these players already own the LCBO's main competitor and now must be paying them off to eliminate their differentiation from the Beer Depot.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but I figured some noise here would be a good start!
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Jon Walker
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Postby Jon Walker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 5:47 pm

Interesting idea...but not a new one. Out of curiosity...which micro do you work for? :-?

Regardless, welcome to the forums.
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Postby Belgian » Fri Apr 28, 2006 5:59 pm

I have always noted remarkable inconsistency in the handling of fresh, unpasteurized micros... some stores have optimal beer 'cool rooms'; then it varies to decent cold-shelf storage, to regular shelves & even appallingly warm stores where everything just rots on the shelf at over 20 degrees C.

So the intelligence varies, but it must exist.

The smart buyer has always sought out any micro product as well-stored and/or extremely fresh... everyone here knows this already I think. I would for example never buy micro brewer six-packs at the Coxwell/O'Connor store, I would prefer to seek it out at Cooper Street.

Making noise here has never helped, except to relieve one's angst. Sending e-mails to the LC might make a ripple. Let us know what they say!

(Good PSA though: buy local, buy fresh, and buy nothing you aren't damn sure was well-cared for.)
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John Aitken
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Postby John Aitken » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:09 pm

Sgt. Major at Markham/Lawrence is kept on the shelf even though it is written right on the box to keep refrigerated. Maybe Heritage will be able to address this in Ottawa which might change the spot allocation throughout Ontario, or maybe not.
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Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:18 pm

Jon Walker wrote:Interesting idea...but not a new one. Out of curiosity...which micro do you work for? :-?

Regardless, welcome to the forums.


I assure you I do not work for a micro, I'm not even close to the industry. I'm just a picky and sometimes cranky consumer!
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Jon Walker
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Postby Jon Walker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:23 pm

Fair enough...it just sounded like an attempt by someone associated with OCB trying to get us to help retain their cooler space.

I'd love to see lots of stores go the route of the one north of the 401 where Yorkdale mall is (wish I could remember the ACTUAL name or number of the store). Anyway, they have one of those seperate, cooled walk-in sections for beer that's huge. Wish Queen's Quay and Summerhill would do that.
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Postby John Aitken » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:25 pm

Must be the new Dufferin/Wilson location. I have heard that it is a huge store.
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Mississauga Matt
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Postby Mississauga Matt » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:27 pm

How about a little bit of civil disobedience?

If you don't like where a beer is displayed, pick up a case and plop it where you think it should be.

One man can't make a difference, but if nothing else it'll make you feel better.
Guess what? I got a fever. And the only prescription ... is more cowbell!
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Postby John Aitken » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:32 pm

I would if I could find a spot that wasn't taken up with macro crap. The Eglinton/Brimley store has a big cooler area but the Macro and Imports get most of the room.
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Tapsucker
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Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:35 pm

Mississauga Matt wrote:How about a little bit of civil disobedience?

If you don't like where a beer is displayed, pick up a case and plop it where you think it should be.

One man can't make a difference, but if nothing else it'll make you feel better.


That is a great idea! Not destructive but just a littel disruptive. Also easier than returning the spoiled product after transporting it home and chilling it.

BTW, I never make much difference but a good beer makes me feel better.
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Postby John Aitken » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:39 pm

Are you suggesting moving the product and the shelf tag? I like that idea, wonder if they would just keep restocking in the new location.
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Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:41 pm

Jon Walker wrote:Fair enough...it just sounded like an attempt by someone associated with OCB trying to get us to help retain their cooler space.

I'd love to see lots of stores go the route of the one north of the 401 where Yorkdale mall is (wish I could remember the ACTUAL name or number of the store). Anyway, they have one of those seperate, cooled walk-in sections for beer that's huge. Wish Queen's Quay and Summerhill would do that.


I might also add that my point was not to justify premium marketing space for my favourites, just to be able to get the stuff fresh and cold. It would be nice if the LCBO helped Ontario brewers and wineries more, but at least they should not mistreat their product in favour of the conglomerates.
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Postby Jon Walker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:42 pm

I LIKE this thread! How about taking loose singles of micro beer from the brown wicker bin and swapping them into cases of Corona, then reclosing them? Those Corona drinkers would find themselves at a party with nothing to drink but Church Key Holy Smoke, taste it and maybe like it! BING, new convert!

Viva la revolution!
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Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:43 pm

John Aitken wrote:Are you suggesting moving the product and the shelf tag? I like that idea, wonder if they would just keep restocking in the new location.


The only downside is that the next poor customer might actually be lead to beleive the product was always on that shelf and therefore properly handled.
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Tapsucker
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Postby Tapsucker » Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:48 pm

Jon Walker wrote:I LIKE this thread! How about taking loose singles of micro beer from the brown wicker bin and swapping them into cases of Corona, then reclosing them? Those Corona drinkers would find themselves at a party with nothing to drink but Church Key Holy Smoke, taste it and maybe like it! BING, new convert!

Viva la revolution!


Before the term 'culture jammer', I knew a good old fashioned misfit that used to print his own bar codes and stick them over items in the grocery store. He once tole me he watched a low income family freak in a no frills store when their cart full of weekly staples totalled $1.43! The best part was the cashier didn't see any problem with that!

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