There was a small panic erupting Tuesday afternoon on various corners of the internet across B.C., as a rumour spread that our B.C. Liquor Stores were set to close.
Similar panicked threads erupted within Facebook community groups, too, as locals wondered how they were going to cope without access to beer, wine, and spirits.
When the liquor stores sell out, what will be the last thing left?— Tron Funkinblow (@tron_funkinblow) March 18, 2020
Just heard BC liquor stores are closing tomorrow morning. Off to spend my savings at my local. No one actually NEEDS rent, right?— Kate. (@kategray__) March 18, 2020
EVERYONE STOCK UP BC LIQUOR STORES ARE CLOSING FOR 2 WEEKS. PAN DI LUN. #PegPahMovementQuarantineEdition— P (@pegpah) March 17, 2020
We reached out to the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch (LDB) Tuesday, who told us that not only were we the second call within 10 minutes on that subject, but also that the rumours are, for the time being, false.
The LDB sent over an official statement later that afternoon.
Here's what they're saying:
- The B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch (LDB) is watching closely as the national and global situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve.
- Our highest priority is the health and safety of those that are most vulnerable, our employees and customers, and we are taking steps to stem the spread of the viral infection COVID-19. These include a number of preventative measures including a rigorous cleaning measures.
- We are hard at work to ensure we are taking all necessary precautions to keep those most vulnerable safe, while determining how we can continue to deliver our services.
- At this time we have no immediate plans to close stores or our distribution centres. We continue to take our direction from the Provincial Health Officer and recognize that the situation is changing quickly. Public health is our top priority.
- We are also working with our business partners, suppliers and stakeholders to ensure supply chains are not disrupted.
Obviously, considering the fluid state of the COVID-19 crisis and the daily changes that are being mandated from the local, provincial, and federal authorities, as well as the move by retailers large and small to either scale back operations or close completely, things at the BC Liquor Stores could change.
In the meantime, keep calm and drink on – responsibly – and be sure to practice social distancing while in any B.C. Liquor Store, and all public places.