Upcoming Changes to Destination Collection Product Submission Process

The Destination Collection Program has succeeded in its goal of bringing increased product selection to Ontario consumers while at the same time offering additional sales opportunities to our trade partners. Thanks to the enthusiasm and interest shown by those participating in the program, the Destination Collection store network has grown to include 17 store locations and our unique online selection has expanded to over 2,000 brands. In order to continue to grow the program, we are implementing process changes to better organize, evaluate and flow new product opportunities into the market.   To provide all products the best sales opportunity possible, we will be strategically timing the releases in accordance with sales and assortment plan. 

Over the next month, we will transition all Destination Collection new product submissions to the New Item Submission System (NISS).  The transition will be as follows:

 August 12th – California Product Call:

We are currently seeking product submissions of California Wines. Brands selected for purchase will be made available for sale in the California boutique store (Store 1) and on LCBO.com. The targeted launch timing for the products selected for purchase is November 2020. To ensure products are in-market by the targeted launch timing, submissions must be entered into NISS by Wednesday, August 12th, 2020. Products should be submitted into Product Call # 2143 - e-commerce - SpecialtyServices(non-consign agents), which can be found under Product Need #135 - e-commerce - Wines.  Step-by-step instructions on how to enter a NISS submission can be found here.

Product Call Specifications:

-       Regionally specific red & white wines from both established & emerging AVAs; preference for small batch, low intervention, high scores; interested in less common varietals including Syrah, Barbera, Grenache, Petite Sirah, Merlot, in addition to Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Chardonnay; price points: $18 - $65 for whites and $25 - $90 for reds

-       Rose and sparkling wines; price points $20 - $55

The additional Destination Collection product calls will be published in August with submission deadlines in early September. 

September 1st – Full Transition to NISS:

Effective September 1st, all product submissions for the Destination Collection Program must be submitted into appropriate product call in NISS by the specified deadline. From September 1st onwards, the Products of the World Application form will no longer be an acceptable means to submit products for purchase consideration. In addition, Seasonal Orders intended for the Destination Collection Program which have been submitted directly into Elite will no longer be approved.

If you are a new user of NISS, you must obtain access before you can begin submitting applications. To request access to NISS, please click here.

With the movement to NISS, we will begin using a structured & systematic process to evaluate product proposals for the Destination Collection Program. Please refer to the attached FAQ for additional details on the go-forward process.

We appreciate your support as we continue to evolve and grow the Destination Collection. If you have any questions, please contact Courtney Dawson at courtney.dawson@lcbo.com or April Dickson at april.dickson@lcbo.com.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the New Item Submission System (NISS)?

NISS is a web-based tool that allows agents and suppliers to view LCBO Product Needs letters and to submit their products for review. The system allows the LCBO's Merchandising team to log, track and approve or decline the submissions. Agents/suppliers are notified via email of any modifications to their application, and whether their product has been accepted or declined. Suppliers will also be able to use this system to forward comments and information back to the LCBO's Merchandising team.

What are the benefits of using NISS?

Using NISS will allow us to achieve the following benefits:

·      NISS reduces paper-based applications and manual administration

·      NISS standardizes the submission process across all LCBO Business Units (Wines, Spirits, Beer & Vintages)

·      NISS improves application turn-around times

·      NISS applications are easier to track

·      Allows the merchandising team to evaluate products more efficiently and effectively to fulfil portfolio needs.

How will products be selected?

Products will be selected from submissions that are input into NISS in response to the Product Needs Letter. The Product Needs Letter is a document that identifies the type of products that the LCBO is interested in purchasing. The Product Needs Letter will stipulate the criteria for the submissions including style of product, and price point(s). The letter also includes submission deadlines which must be met for a product to be considered for purchase. Products entered into NISS by the submission deadline will be evaluated by the Category team. Product evaluations are based on the following criteria, as well as the overall judgment of the buying team regarding the commercial prospects of a product:

-       Fit with product callparameters

-       Past performance of the same product in the Destination Collection Program and/or the performance of other products from the same supplier

-       3rd party awards/accolades

-       Label and packaging appeal

-       Product differentiation

Following this review, a decision will be made to purchase the product or to decline the submission.

Will consignment brands still be considered? How will that process work?

Consignment brands will be considered for purchase. Products should be submitted into the appropriate product call.

Will the Purchase Order process be changing?

The current process remains unchanged. Items will be ordered using Elite & will be housed in the Specialty Services Warehouse.

If my product is declined, can I submit it again in a future product call?

Yes!  We will be purchasing products to meet our forecasted sales and consumer demand for a given period of time.  A product decline will often mean that we have fulfilled our projected needs for the time being with other products.  We will be constantly replenishing with new products as our stock sells down.  If the product is still available, agents can resubmit products in the next call for consideration at another time.

What do I do if my product doesn’t meet the specifications of any of the product calls?

If you have a product proposal that does not fit into any of the calls, please contact Courtney Dawson at courtney.dawson@lcbo.com and April Dickson at april.dickson@lcbo.com to discuss the opportunity.