GNWT amends liquor regulations to allow liquor delivery

Public Service Announcement

Yellowknife — May 8, 2020

Effective today, the Department of Finance has introduced amendments to the Northwest Territories’ Liquor Regulations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The amended regulations allow all Class A and Class B licensed establishments in the Northwest Territories (NWT) to sell beer, wine and spirits for take-out and delivery without the need for an off-premises extension to their license.

Prior to these changes, Class A and Class B licensed establishments who had an off-premises extension to their license were permitted to sell beer only, and delivery was prohibited. 

These amendments are intended to help restaurants and bars remain in business and keep staff employed, while encouraging physical distancing, during the pandemic.

There are some restrictions that licensed establishments must follow under the new regulations:

·       Class B licence holders can only sell liquor in combination with food;

·       Licensed establishments must use their own, in-house delivery service; establishments may not use common carriers, such as taxis or other private delivery services, for the delivery of liquor;

·       Establishments may not sell liquor for take-out or delivery on Sundays or after 10:00 PM;

·       Establishments must limit their sales for off-premises consumption to the following:

o   no more than 1.5 L of wine per day, per customer (two 750 ml bottles of wine);

o   no more than one 1.14 L of spirits per day, per customer (commonly referred to as a 40 oz. bottle); or

o   no more than 8.52 L of beer per day, per customer (twenty-four 355 ml cans)

NWT liquor inspectors will continue to work with licensed establishments to ensure compliance with the NWT Liquor Act and amended Liquor Regulations across the territory.

Media Contact:

Cabinet Communications
Government of the Northwest Territories