Unveiling of provincial buck a beer scheme expected today

Pumping up the volume Doug Ford has reignited debate around 'price gouging' by fuel

But many folks at the Beer Store today are in.

At a brewery in Picton on Tuesday, the premier said the program, which was one of his promises during the spring election campaign, will not cost taxpayers anything.

Even a brand like Laker, which once prided itself on its $1-a-bottle price point, is retailing at $1.95 for a 473 ml can. Several small brewers, among the province's 260, have passed on the plan.

Brewers would not be required to charge less, and the lower minimum price would not apply to draft beer, nor would it include the bottle deposit. Angry residents created the hashtag #boycottbuckabeer which urged consumers to avoid buying beer at any brewer offering beer for $1 a bottle.

"We were elected on a promise to reduce red tape and put the people first", said Ford while making the announcement at Barley Days Brewery today.

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"What it is", Ford said, "is putting money back in people's pockets".

"I don't think a lot of breweries will be participating in this", Meek said, "I think it's a bad idea". Many Ontarians took to Twitter Tuesday to voice their discontent with the "buck-a-beer" announcement, particularly in light of the government's recent cancellation of a Basic Income Pilot project.

In the meantime, there are already plenty of beers that sell for cheap in Ontario. The LCBO says up to 214 of its 660 outlets could host an identical end of aisle display for roughly one month or one "promotional turn" as they call it, at a cost of $36,000 to $46,000.

While that sounds insanely cheap, note that for the last 10 years, the minimum price for beer was only $1.25. "Our drinkers are looking for something with character and flavour". I don't see how any craft brewery could make a quality product at that price.

"I'd like to pay less for a case of beer when I go into a store".

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A number of other breweries, including Great Lakes Brewery, Muskoka Brewery and The Napanee Beer Co., voiced frustration with the initiative and vowed that they wouldn't participate. "We're confident we can produce a high-quality beer at that price", said Kyle Baldwin, the general manager of Barley Days.

"We're going to do this smartly and responsibly", said Ford.

Ford also promised to allow the sale of beer, wine and spirits in corner stores across the province.

To encourage the province's breweries to lower their prices, Ford launched the 'Buck-a-Beer Challenge'.

Taxes on alcohol sales in Canada have been steadily increasing for decades, with the most recent hike happening in April 2018 when the federal government raised taxes on local and imported beer by two per cent.

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"There are no financial incentives - the tax portion of the beer is not being reduced". "The Premier is asking the beer producers to lower their price".

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