I recently concluded a poll with the question: “Where do you buy off-trade alcohol? (select all that apply)” There were 46 responses, broken down as follows:
Supermarket: 41 (89%)
Traditional off-licence: 10 (21%)
Discount off-licence: 5 (10%)
Specialist off-licence: 21 (45%)
Corner shop: 14 (30%)
Pub off-sales: 2 (4%)
Mail order/internet: 9 (19%)
This clearly underlines the dominance the supermarkets have achieved in the market. Given that quite a few beer enthusiasts read this blog, it’s not entirely surprising to see specialist off-licences come second. But the fact that corner shops come out ahead of traditional off-licences illustrates the problems that sector has been experiencing, recently leading to Thresher going into administration.
As an aside, earlier this evening I visited a specialist off-licence and bought six bottles of beer, three German, three British, at an average price per unit of 71.3p. Don Shenker would be proud of me!