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‘Pop or pilsner’: Vernon apartment’s beer vending machine causes concern

Concerned tenant says anyone can access the vending machine, no matter their age

A Vernon resident is baffled by a vending machine that contains beer in his apartment building.

Chris (a pseudonym as the resident did not want his name published) has lived at The Royal building, formerly Civic Place, on 37th Avenue for 10 years. He says a year and a half ago, the building got a new management company, Landcore Management.

That’s when the vending machine arrived in the laundry room, just a few metres away from a gum ball machine for kids.

The machine has a selection of pop, and for $4, anyone can buy a selection of two beers from the machine.

That doesn’t sit well with Chris.

“I think there’s people with families that live here,” he said. “Who knows if any minors have went already and purchased beer. My niece could even just be visiting and say ‘hey, I want a pop’ … and all of a sudden she comes back with a pilsner.”

Chris contacted the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Board (LCRB) and lodged a complaint about the un-monitored vending machine on May 23.

In an email to The Morning Star, the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General confirmed the vending machine is not linked to any government-issued liquor licence or special event permit.

“A vending machine would also not allow appropriate age verification,” a spokesperson for the ministry said.

The ministry has referred the matter to the Vernon RCMP.

Chris notes the vending machine may be accessible to the public, as the gate and front door to the building are frequently left open.

In response to a request for comment, Landcore Management denied selling beer in the vending machine, saying a piece of tape reading ‘beer’ was put onto the machine “as a joke.” However, When Chris put $4 into the machine Friday morning, a can of alcoholic Busch beer was dispensed.

In a follow-up email, Landcore Management said it would be speaking to the person who takes care of the machine.

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Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started at the Morning Star as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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