North American liquor stores and bars are pulling Russian vodka off their shelves in solidarity with Ukraine.
On Friday, Peter Bethlenfalvy, Ontario's Minister of Finance, directed the provincial's Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) to remove all Russian vodka from stores.
"Ontario joins Canada's allies in condemning the Russian government's act of aggression against the Ukrainian people, and will direct the LCBO to withdraw all products produced in Russia from store shelves," Bethlenfalvy said.
Ontario joins Canada’s allies in condemning the Russian government’s act of aggression against the Ukrainian people, and will direct the LCBO to withdraw all products produced in Russia from store shelves.— Peter Bethlenfalvy (@PBethlenfalvy) February 25, 2022
Fox News reports LCBO will remove Russian liquor and other products from 700 stores across the province.
However, some people question LCBO's move because "the inventory is already paid for. The LCBO is the only one who suffers while they store this paid inventory. The easiest answer is to stop any future purchases."
I don’t get this move. This inventory is already paid for. The @LCBO is the only one who suffers while they store this paid inventory. The easiest answer is to stop any future purchases.— Dididothisright? (@MiMTkeMtucker) February 25, 2022
That’s where the pain is felt. Not taking paid product off the shelf and hiding it.
Some question if Canada is willing to ban Russian vodka imports, why not energy products?
Canadian liquor stores are pulling Russian vodka from their shelves.— Stephen Taylor (@stephen_taylor) February 25, 2022
Now let's really put a real dent in Putin and ban Russian energy imports.
More than 40% of Russia's export wealth comes from petroleum. pic.twitter.com/HEHcKa1ihe
Other provinces, including Manitoba, New Brunswick, British Columbia, and Newfoundland, are taking similar action.
The Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation, which controls sales of alcoholic beverages across Nova Scotia, said Russian vodka has been removed from store shelves and website because of the "terrible events taking place."
Just south, in the US, some bars and liquor stores reportedly poured out Russian vodka onto the streets and or removed the products from store shelves. Fox News called it a "vodka rebellion."
"I think the whole world knows by now that Russia's at war with Ukraine for no apparent reason," said Jamie Stratton, owner of Jacob Liquor Exchange in Wichita, Kansas, told local news KSNW-TV. He removed more than 100 bottles from his store and poured some on the ground.
"I guess this is our sanction … and this may be small, but every small thing makes a difference," Stratton said.
There has yet to be a concerted effort by US state or county liquor boards to ban Russian vodka, just individual stores and bars/restaurants letting their emotions get ahead of themselves by dumping already paid for vodka into the streets as a protest. How does this exactly hurt Russia?
Here's a novel idea: liquidate the current inventory of Russian vodka instead of wasting it and cancel future purchases. Then switch to domestic brands.
Anyways, it appears a Russian vodka rebellion is underway and could spread worldwide if the movement goes viral on social media.