NHL lockout, weather impact beer sales across province
© Dave Mathieson - Amherst News
Liquor sales across Cumberland County remained stable in 2012-13.
AMHERST – Liquor sales remained steady in Cumberland County last year, although the prolonged NHL lockout last winter did impact the final numbers.
Figures released by the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation indicated sales of $16.4 million at its seven Cumberland County locations, compared to $16.3 million in 2011-12.
“For the most part, sales were fairly consistent in each location,” NSLC spokesman Mike Maloney said.
Maloney said the lockout that ended in January and poor weather conditions during a couple of long weekends impacted sales, with beer sales continuing to drop locally as well as provincially.
“The NHL lockout affected beer sales right across the country and beer is nearly 50 per cent of our market. Any small drop in that is big in terms of dollars,” Maloney said. “It’s also part of a trend in that beer sales are declining. We are also seeing a move to premierization in that people are drinking a little less but they’re drinking a little better. People are willing to try new and better premium products.”
Locally, the NSLC store on South Albion Street continued to lead sales across the county with $6.67 million in sales compared to $6.4 million last year, while the Amherst LaPlanche Street store had sales of $3 million compared to $3.2 million in 2011-12 (a drop of about $200,000).
Springhill store was third highest in the county with sales of $2.05 million compared to $2.01 million last year. Pugwash jumped to $1.48 million from $1.4 million and Parrsboro went from $1.694 million a year ago to $1.693 in the latest numbers.
Oxford saw a drop to $1.13 million in sales from $1.17 million a year ago and Joggins finished at $370,000 compared to $377,000 last year.
Provincially, the corporation had a net income of $226.4 million on $492.9 million in sales. The net income was $1.5 million above budget and represents a $4.9 million (2.2 per cent) increase over the previous year.