Lab testing

The Lab

As one of the world’s largest beverage alcohol retailers, the LCBO sells more than $3.5 billion of wine, spirits and beer annually. Every product is tasted, tested and certified by the LCBO’s Quality Assurance department.

In fact, the Quality Assurance (QA) department conducts more than 400,000 laboratory tests and tastes more than 5,000 products each year. The LCBO’s QA department has earned an international reputation for accuracy and reliability. Its beverage alcohol laboratory was the first in North America to achieve dual ISO accreditation (ISO/IEC 17025, ISO 9001:2000) ensuring that QA Certificates of Analysis are accepted worldwide. Besides serving internal client groups, the QA department also performs chemical, microbiological, physical and sensory testing for external clients, such as manufacturers, suppliers and agents. This testing is fast, accurate, confidential and competitively priced. The Quality Assurance department makes sure products are safe to consume and that they meet federal and provincial compositional, packaging and labelling standards. They ensure and check for:


Safe and Authentic Products

The LCBO’s Quality Assurance department sets the highest standard and conducts more than half a million tests and tastes more than 7,000 products every year. In fact, the Quality Assurance laboratory is used as a benchmark by other Canadian liquor jurisdictions and beverage alcohol producers.


Product Recall

Although the quality and safety of all alcoholic beverages listed with the LCBO are monitored through regular Quality Assurance testing, there are times when recalls of products are necessary. The LCBO has two types of recalls: Class 1 and Class 2.


Illegal Alcohol

Smuggled liquor and illegally manufactured wine have been found to contain toxins. Bootleg alcohol is also accessible to those who should not have it — minors and intoxicated people — putting others at risk from impaired driving and other dangerous situations.


Identifying Allergens

While the most common allergens found in LCBO products are sulphites in wine and gluten in beer, we consistently review products to identify which ones may require allergen declarations under the Canadian Food and Drug Regulations.