Customer Deception: To Wine About It or Become Educated

LONE TREE, Colo., Oct. 25, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Since 1997, Lukas Liquor Superstore has called Lone Tree home. Locally owned and family operated, owner Joe Brunner has experienced many changes since first opening — notably the increase in private label products offered at big box retailers.

With the rapid expansion of these big box retailers, what does this mean for “mom and pop” shops like Lukas Liquor? Are these stores really what’s best for consumers?

The Current Distribution Process

Under the current law, there’s a three-tiered process for purchasing alcohol in Colorado. The supplier (ex. Jack Daniels) works with a distributor, who then offers the product to other retailers like Lukas Liquor and national chains, who then sell it to the consumer. This creates a fair system where every retailer pays the same price for a bottle of Jack, spirits, or other wine. However, some national chains are manipulating the supply chain, limiting certain products from distribution through exorbitant delivery fees, minimum orders, and not disclosing what’s available to other retailers.

Price-Fixing: The Creation of an Unfair Market

A manipulated distribution process causes price fixing, where retail sellers maintain a certain price level to increase their profits while eliminating the competition leaving the consumer left to pay the price — quite literally. For example, a local big box retailer carries more than 3,000 products that are caught in this supply game. Let’s see how their big box prices compare to those of Lukas Liquor*:

  • A bottle of Shieldaig Speyside Single Malt 21Yr costs $159.99 at the national chain, versus $79.99 at Lukas Liquor.
  • A bottle of Salmon Sancerre Sauvignon Blanc costs $39.99 at the national chain, versus $24.95 at Lukas Liquor.
  • TULI Pinot Noir Sonoma County costs $29.99 at the national chain, versus $14.99 at Lukas Liquor.
Colorado’s November Election

November could bring even more changes to the Colorado liquor landscape due to three measures — Initiative 96, Initiative 121, and Initiative 122.

Proposition 124 (formerly known as Initiative 96) would allow national chain liquor stores to possess an increasing number of licenses for more stores, leading to an unlimited amount by 2037 — contributing to the rapid expansion of these big box retailers. A vote of “no” would restrict the total license to three locations within the state with a maximum of four after 2026.

Proposition 125 (formerly known as Initiative 121) would allow grocery/convenience stores, like Safeway and Sam’s Club, that currently sell beer to also sell wine— expanding their inventory of products.

Proposition 126 (formerly known as Initiative 122) would allow for third-party delivery services of alcohol within the state. If passed, this measure includes grocery/convenience stores, liquor stores, bars, restaurants, and other liquor-licensed businesses, and makes takeout and delivery of alcohol from bars and restaurants permanently available.

Consumer or Politics — Which Matters More?

According to KOAA News5, the co-founders of a national liquor store chain, U.S. Rep. David Trone, D-Md., and his brother, Robert Trone, have spent $1.8 million in support of Initiative 96 (now Proposition 124) through the Coloradans for Liquor Fairness committee to further their expansion and domination of the Colorado liquor market. Further, the supply chain for this national chain is designed to only benefit its multi-billion dollar businesses, hurting other liquor store entrepreneurs, while also leaving Coloradoans victims of out-of-state corporations’ missions and politics.

When heading to the polls, consider yourself, your local brewery, distillery, winery, and friendly neighborhood liquor store. Are you paying extra for an “exclusive” wine, or is that $35 bottle of wine only exclusive because corporations are manipulating the supply chain for their gain.

About Lukas Liquor Superstore

Family-owned and operated since 1997, Lukas Liquor has more than 18,000 square feet of the best wine, beer, and spirits selection. They feature everyday low prices, knowledgeable staff, and offer wines-by-the-case discounts and other deals, with their customers in mind.

*Please note that the wine and liquor pricing mentioned in this press release is accurate as of 10/17/22 and that prices are subject to change.*

Contact Information

Name:  Joe Brunner


Phone Number:  303-792-2288

SOURCE Lukas Liquor Superstore