Thiruvananthapuram: Keralites did not let go off the liquor bottle even when floods and landslides wreaked havoc across Kerala in August, shows the latest statistics of the State Beverages Corporation (BEVCO). Alcohol worth Rs 1,229 crore was sold via the BEVCO outlets during that single month - an increase of Rs 71 crore over the July sales.
Even when it was raining cats and dogs in the state, most of the liquor outlets remained open, leading to increased sales. Some shops in Koratti and Changanassery did not function on two days.
During the massive floods of August 2018, 30-odd outlets were shut. Even then, the sales figures had touched Rs 1,143 crore. However, this time around, an increase of only Rs 86 crore was noted in the same month.
Every year, August and September turn out to be most profitable months for the liquor business in the state with the sales touching new high. However, this time too, the floods had poured cold water over the bid to achieve record sales.
Though a setback was expected in June this year, the sales went up. The maximum sales were reported from the outlet number 10003 in Tirur, while the shop in Munnar was left in the last slot with the lowest sales in June. Though no new outlets were opened, nine shops were moved to different locations this year.
The next big sales phase is during the 10-day Onam holidays.
The stats with the BEVCO prove that every financial year, the income increases by Rs 1,000 crore to Rs 1,500 crore. Alcohol worth Rs 9,878.83 crore was sold in Kerala this year so far, an increase of Rs 6,37.45 crore from the same period last year.
The BEVCO made Rs 14,508.10 crore during the last financial year through liquor sale. This was an all-time high and recorded a jump of Rs 1,567 crore.
During 2017-18, liquor sale of Rs 12,937.20 crore was recorded.
The stats of the last 10 years show that liquor sale in the state has doubled from Rs 5,000 crore to Rs 10,000 crore.