Your say: Should our supermarkets and convenience stores start doing this? 341



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If you’ve ever been to America, or watched an American film, you would no doubt have noticed that when a character goes into a convenience store, they can pick up a can of beer at the same time. So should we be able to do this too?

According to SMH, Costco is appealing a court decision that currently bans it from selling alcohol at the new Adelaide store.

SA’s licensing court found that Costco’s proposed model for selling alcohol would set a precedent in the retail sector if allowed, but is that really a bad thing? Costco stores in Victoria, ACT and NSW sell alcohol, while in QLD, retailers must have a pub licence or a pub to sell alcohol.

Hardly any Coles, Woolworths or other supermarkets can currently sell alcohol from the aisles, and instead have separate areas attached to the store. So is it about time this changed?

The Competition Policy Review, released this week, encourages more competition in retail, but convenience stores are feeling left out. If the big supermarkets get looser licensing laws, then the little guys could miss out. According to Jeff Rogut, the chief executive of the Australasian Association of Convenience Stores, the solution is to allow convenience stores to sell alcohol – something that would generate about $400 million to $500 million in sales.

Mr Rogut said rules in North America, the UK and Asia showed Australia’s liquor licensing laws were “really back in the [19]60s and ’70s”. Would you agree?

“There’s 160,000 convenience stores in the US,” Mr Rogut said. “There may be one or two isolated areas where they don’t allow alcohol – like Philadelphia or Pittsburgh, or somewhere up there – but the vast majority sell alcohol.

“We were in Japan and Korea last year, virtually every convenience store that we saw sold beer, wine and spirits, from individual, almost little cups that you can drink on the run, to full bottles”.

Mr Rogut argues that retailers should have the ability to choose to sell beer and wine and sell it in the same way they sell tobacco, lottery and other restricted products.


So have your say today: should our supermarkets and convenience stores sell alcohol? Or will this further promote a drinking culture? Tell us below.

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  1. I’ve never understood why we don’t. The major chains already have a large market share of the industry.

  2. New Zealand has allowed this for over 10 years .. Is such a civilised idea

    2 REPLY
    • I’m not sure what makes it civilised, Robyn? Can you explain your reasoning please? I’m genuine in my question.

      1 REPLY
      • Michelle, I second that… Australia and NZ are just two of many countries whose citizens have a poor ability to assimilate alcohol. I’ve also noticed a big increase in aggressive behaviour after consumption of approx. 4 glasses of beer and spirits (which contain gluten). A book entitled “Grain Brain” by US neurologist Dr David Perlmutter, as well as his website, explains why this is so. It doesn’t happen the same way with wine, being fruit based. However, I just don’t share the fascination that many people have with alcohol and its general effect on the brain.

    • Many people can drink alcohol AND remain civilised! The problem in Aus & NZ is that wherever it’s purchased, when abused it
      causes much grief.

  3. I think it’s fine for supermarkets and convenience stores, except where the convenience store is attached to a petrol station.

  4. I dont see why we have to allow this just because it is done in other countries. Apart from it not addressing the great Australian drinking problem, why do we in Australia always have to wag our collective tail just because the world dog does so? Why cant we get back to being a leader, rather than a follower?

    13 REPLY
    • So I’m assuming from your comment that you don’t like Saturday afternoon or Sunday trading (because other countries did it first) or even late night shopping (because other countries did it first).

    • The trouble is ,just because it is done overseas doesn’t mean it a good idea . Our young have a big enough problem with drinking . Why make it easier to get it . We have bottle shops on every corner now ,why worry about putting it in to supermarkets . I’ve also seen drunks walking around drinking in the American supermarkets because they can buy it there . Is that how you want to do your grocery shopping . I don’t . .

    • Pam if would be great if we went back to the old ways clothing 1/2 Saturday and all day Sunday there maybe more family outings more families having family time instead of children with sitters time unfortunately that will not happen that’s they way the world is turning and NO ONE is going to do anything and that includes me which is sad in a way. We do try how ever to make the most of it. Have a lovely day and enjoy life

    • Pam Holland, I for one could live without shops all weekend, and late night shopping was never an advantage for me – perhaps it is for you and that is OK too.

      1 REPLY
      • I work and the only time I get shopping done is at the weekend , so over the reasons given being ” family” make it an outing and teach them the value of money rather than just let them become ” gimme”

        1 REPLY
        • Hiccup in me iphone, so many of my friends have ” gimme” children with one exception and that family shop together on Sunday ( Victoria) totally disagree with alcohol being even more readily available , mind you info like what the French do with their children and drinking ! Anyway and very tongue in cheek , back to the old days , shut 12 noon, close everything 6 pm and no equal opportunity! Not much has changed there anyway if you are gay or some sections of the female workforce

    • We have so much domestic violence now and much of it is alchohol related..why make it easier for those people who can’t control their urge to get drunk

    • We don’t have to follow what the rest of the world is doing; bad enough with having to do shift work, let alone working week-ends! Must maintain the week-ends for family get-together. There’s only so much money to spend, & I think more time management is the order of the day for us all!!

    • Live in a large country town in Qld and the major shops do not open Sundays and close lunchtime Saturday .

      1 REPLY
      • Which country town is that I would love it should I start packing.

    • I thought the issue was being able to pick up alcohol in the aisles, not the late night shopping. Also as for late night shopping – there are MANY people, mainly the ones who work in the shops that can only do THEIR shopping at the late night shops.Also f you work M-F/9-5 you have to rely on weekend trading & late night shopping to get your shopping done. Not every family has kids for ‘family’ days especially if your kids have grown up & moved out.

    • Pam,where did that come from. You are deliberately making a silly comment just to get a bite ….and I fell for it 🙂

    • Exactly Kay, not everyone has a family to go out with and shops being open is a way they can socialise as well. It is happening here now that liquor is in the stores, has anyone been into an Aldi store lately??

    • Drinking is a huge problem lets not make it worse by increasing availability of alcohol
      Health family society are all suffering it’s effects

    • No – let’s return the legal age to purchase alcohol to 21, which is was up until the late 1960’s.

  5. One would have to wonder ‘why’ – If I want to buy groceries I go to the supermarket or grocer, if I want to buy a bicycle I go to a bicycle shop, so why can’t I just go to the liquor store (or section) if I want to buy booze?

  6. Have we not enough alcohol fueled problems without having supermarkets selling it too. I would not support this in anyway. I think there is enough places to buy alcohol.

  7. making it easy for underaged kids to buy. no way. There are enough outlets

    2 REPLY
    • There are very strict rules to the sale of alcohol in supermarkets and they are monitored very closely.

    • Yes because it is usually separate, if it was through the tore then it falls to the check-out person to check age.

  8. Supermarkets are to buy food..plenty of pubs and bottle shops to buy grog from, people who are alcoholics will just buy alcohol instead of food and more kids will go hungry..dumb idea

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