Issue 16-84: Liquor Sales

April 28, 2016

Domestic beers are reasserting their dominance in the B.C. beer market, likely due to the increasing popularity of local craft beer and microbreweries. In 2014/15, the British Columbia Liquor Distribution Branch sold over 242 million litres of domestic beer, an increase of 5.1% over the previous year. By comparison, imported beer sales declined (-1.2% to $42 million litres). In recent years, sales of domestic beer have been rising steadily, while sales of imported beer have shown more volatility.

With 69% of the total market share, beer is by far the most popular product sold at liquor stores. Wine (17%), refreshments such as ciders and coolers (9%) and spirits (6%) account for smaller shares of the total volume sold. However, wine sales have been increasing. Overall, total sales in litres of wine were up 5.3% over the 2014/15 fiscal year, compared to just 4.1% for beer. Unlike beer, domestic and imported wines are relatively equal in popularity. Sales of domestic wines climbed 6.8% in 2014/15, whereas sales of imported wines increased a more moderate 3.6%.

Data Source: BC Liquor Distribution Branch