Thursday, May 28, 2020

As part of its broader package of measures to support Ontarians and businesses that have been significantly impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19, the Government of Ontario amended Regulation 719 under the Liquor Licence Act (LLA) to temporarily allow liquor sales licensees (i.e., licensed bars and restaurants) to sell beer, wine and spirits as part of a food order for takeout or delivery. These changes are effective from March 26, 2020 until December 31, 2020.

All liquor sales licensees are automatically permitted to sell liquor for takeout or delivery along with food – they do not have to apply, request permission, or notify the AGCO.

This page is intended to provide a general overview for licensees but is not an exhaustive list of all requirements. Liquor sales licensees wishing to sell liquor with takeout or delivery of food should review the Regulation to ensure compliance with requirements.

As a licence holder, you are required to operate in compliance with the LLA and its regulations, as well as all other applicable law.

Links to electronic versions of the LLA and its regulations are available on the AGCO’s Acts and Regulations page.

The Basics

  • The ability to sell alcohol with food takeout and delivery orders is a temporary measure, ending December 31, 2020.
  • All types of alcohol, including beer, wine, cider and spirits, may be sold for takeout and delivery. Alcohol must be purchased together with food. 
    • Beer and wine made under a brew pub or wine pub endorsement is included in this measure.
  • Alcohol must be in a factory sealed and unopened container; this includes unopened bottles of wine or spirits, unopened cans of cider, or unopened bottles or cans of beer.
  • The only alcohol that licensees may sell is alcohol purchased under their liquor sales licence. 
    • There is an exception for beer or wine made at the licensed establishment under a Brew or Wine Pub Endorsement, provided it is in a sealed, unopened container. 
  • There is no limit on the amount of liquor that may be sold for takeout or delivery.
  • Licensees are not required to charge for delivery but may do so if they choose.
  • Payment methods are a business decision of the licensee.
  • Pricing for liquor sold with food for takeout and delivery is the decision of the licensee. However, the price of liquor cannot be less than the minimum price of:
    • $2 for a 12 oz (341 ml) beer
    • $2 for 5 oz (142 ml) glass of wine
    • $1.34 for a drink containing 1 oz (29 ml) of spirits
  • If a licence holder offers for sale a serving of liquor that differs in size from those listed above, the minimum price for that serving shall increase or decrease in direct proportion to the difference in volume of liquor contained in that serving.
  • A third-party service for takeout or delivery of liquor sales can be used, provided they are acting on behalf of the licensee and the individual carrying out the delivery of the order has completed Smart Serve training.   

Do

  • Ensure liquor sold for takeout or delivery is purchased together with food.
    • This includes beer and wine made under a brew pub or wine pub endorsement.
  • Ensure only liquor in sealed and unopened containers is sold for takeout or delivery.
  • Ensure any individuals involved in the sale or delivery of liquor have completed Smart Serve training, including any third parties acting as agent for the licensee.
  • Ask for and inspect identification if licensees, employees or agents think anyone attempting to purchase liquor is under 19 years old.
  • Keep records of liquor sold for takeout and delivery for one year.
    • Record on an order form for each order:
      • The name and address of the licensee
      • The name and address of the person who paid for the order
      • The kinds and amounts of liquor that were purchased
      • The address where the food and liquor are being delivered to.
    • Record and keep receipts for one year for each delivery of food and liquor:
      • The name and address of the person who paid for the order
      • The kinds and amounts of liquor that were delivered
      • The date of delivery
      • The price paid for the liquor
      • The delivery fee, if any
      • The name of the person making the delivery.

Do Not

  • Sell or deliver liquor to anyone under 19 years old.
  • Sell or deliver liquor to anyone who is, or appears to be, intoxicated. This includes where the liquor is delivered by a third party on behalf of the licensee. 
    • Note: Where a third party is acting as an agent for the licensee, the AGCO expects that the licensee and the agent have an agreement that addresses how the delivery will meet responsible sale and service requirements.  
  • Give liquor for takeout to anyone other than the person who purchased the liquor.
    • For delivery, the liquor must be delivered to the person that paid for it, or to another person at the delivery address who is at least 19 years old.
  • Deliver liquor and food separately. Orders that only include alcohol are not permitted.
    • Note: Liquor and food must be delivered together by the licensee, an employee of the licensee, or an agent of the licensee. This means a third party, such as a food delivery service, may deliver the food and liquor, if the food delivery service is acting on behalf of the licensee.
  • Sell and deliver liquor outside the permitted hours of 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
    • This means that all aspects of the sale and delivery, including acceptance of the order by the purchaser or at the delivery address, must take place within the permitted hours.
  • Deliver liquor to a location that is not a residential address.
  • Deliver liquor to a patient in an institution listed in Schedule 1 of Regulation 718 (General) made under the LLA, or to a patient in an institution for the treatment of alcoholics.
  • Deliver liquor that is not factory sealed, including draft beer or mixed drinks/cocktails that are put into containers by the licensee.
    • Ingredients for mixed drinks or cocktails may be sold and delivered, provided the alcohol portion of the ingredients is in a sealed and unopened container.
    • Brew pubs with sealed, unopened bottles, including growlers of product made on-site, can sell these products for takeout and delivery. 

For More Information

Information Bulletin: Liquor sales licensees may now sell liquor for takeout or delivery along with food 

Information Bulletin: Changes to minimum price for spirits ordered with food for takeout and delivery

Information Bulletin: AGCO will extend the term of your active licence, authorization and/or registration  

Ontario.ca/coronavirus  

Contact

AGCO Customer Service
Telephone: 416-326-8700
Toll free in Ontario: 1-800-522-2876
Or via the iAGCO online portal

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