No rise in purchases at grocery outlets after closure of dedicated liquor stores

Eugene (right) and director Siong Chuah managing the counter of their grocery store that also sells alcoholic beverages.

Dedicated liquor stores are closed in Penang during the lockdown but other premises selling alcohol alongside food and other essentials have not noticed any spike in sales of alcoholic drinks.

Grocery store manager Eugene Chuah said the sale of their alcoholic beverages remained average.“Those who come here to pick up alcoholic beverages take only one or two bottles each time.

“The others get their orders online. “People do not usually buy alcoholic drinks in bulk or on a regular basis,” he said at his store in Burmah Road, George Town, Penang.

Eugene said although dedicated liquor stores were closed, they likely had a regular customer base who could place orders online and through deliveries.

“I do not think being closed has a significant impact on these dedicated liquor stores nor will we benefit from their closure,” he added.

At Gama Supermarket and Departmental Store along Datuk Keramat Road, senior marketing manager Leong Hau Soon said

there was no significant increase in sales at their alcohol section.“Most shoppers are here to buy essentials only,” said Leong.

“Customers who do buy alcoholic beverages usually pick just a few bottles at one time.”

George Town OCPD Asst Comm Soffian Santong said that based on the current standard operating procedures, stores that sell only alcoholic beverages were not allowed to operate during the lockdown.

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