Allow home-delivery of liquor to keep Omicron at bay: ISWAI to TS

International Spirits & Wines Association of India (ISWAI), the apex body of the premium AlcoBev sector, on Thursday urged the Telangana government to consider home delivery of liquor given the Omicron threat.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  31 Dec 2021 5:27 AM GMT
Allow home-delivery of liquor to keep Omicron at bay: ISWAI to TS

Hyderabad: International Spirits & Wines Association of India (ISWAI), the apex body of the premium AlcoBev sector, on Thursday urged the Telangana government to consider home delivery of liquor given the Omicron threat.

The ISWAI said the current festive months are the peak consumption period for the industry, and regularizing and formalizing home delivery will ensure minimal disruption to the industry.

The association said it will ensure citizen convenience, and also protect jobs whilst protecting state revenue.

Underlining the need to implement online liquor delivery, ISWAI CEO Nita Kapoor, pointed to a 2020 post-Covid lockdown Local Circles survey on "Consumer pulse on home delivery of liquor" that shows 52 percent of citizens of the 8,078 polled across the country wanting state administrations to implement a 'home delivery solution'.

The survey also reaffirms that the majority of consumers of alcoholic beverages called out convenience & social distancing as the two most important reasons for ordering alcohol via home delivery.

The excise department figures available from the states of West Bengal and Maharashtra on the number of orders placed via home delivery of liquor during the pandemic validates the argument for home delivery, she said West Bengal recorded a total order count of 1.91 lakh home deliveries with a registered buyer count of around 1.5 lakh while Maharashtra recorded close to 60 lakh home deliveries between May 15, 2020, and March 31, 2021.

"Given the demand among citizens in all the states, we believe that if the home delivery model is regularized with all the necessary regulations in place, going forward, this could become a potential channel for encouraging responsible drinking beside the growth of revenue for states," she said

She said most state governments announced strict and prompt containment action at the local and district levels.

"Allowing home delivery to be included as a permanent feature of the excise policies of the states to cater to consumer demands and minimize industry disruptions during the Covid surge," she said.

ISWAI Secretary-General Suresh Menon requested the state government to reinforce and frame standard home delivery norms to ensure that there's no harassment from authorities and no delivery is made to underage consumers

"Allowing home delivery of liquor to continue will address the problem of the low retail density of AlcoBev outlets, he said the revenue of the State Government would also be protected as only duty paid and genuine products will be sourced from licensed retailers and delivered by the retailers' employees, or by their authorized agents," he said.

ISWAI, he said, is ready to partner with the states to build comprehensive regulations and safeguards, inculcating a practice of responsible consumption.

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