Ontario to offer incentives to brewers in buck-a-beer plan

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford is expected to roll out the provincial government's buck a beer plan when he visits a brewery early today in Picton, Ont.

To encourage brewers to lower their prices, the Premier formally launched the 'Buck-a-Beer Challenge.' Any brewer who agrees to lower their prices on or after August 27 will, for a limited time throughout the year, receive LCBO promotional considerations such as limited-time discounts, in-store displays on end aisles and shelf extenders, or advertising in LCBO flyers and newspaper inserts.

The move will have no effect on the province's $589-million in revenue from beer and alcohol taxes, Finance Minister Vic Fedeli said. The price does not include a bottle deposit and does not apply to draft beer.

The LCBO is offering incentives to breweries that participate in buck-and-beer come Labour Day.

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"Lower alcohol prices can lead to increased consumption, particularly among those with alcohol problems, and among young people, and that increased consumption can in turn lead to increased alcohol-related problems, including impaired driving". It's up to brewers to actually pass down the savings of $1 beer to consumers. Ford campaigned on the idea of lowering beer prices with the catchy slogan.

In the meantime, there are already plenty of beers that sell for cheap in Ontario.

Annual indexing for all packaged beer will be suspended to maintain the $1.00 minimum floor price over time.

The Liberals raised the minimum price after being lobbied by major breweries, documents have shown.

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Some opposing breweries, such as Great Lakes Brewery, have spoken out against the initiative.

"You definitely won't see.FreshGLB take part in this".

The premier was also asked about his plan for the sale of cannabis once it becomes legal in October, after some published reports said the province would allow private sector sales.

"We aren't ready to talk about that right now", he said.

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