Craft brewers in Maryland are not content with the new regulations regarding their industry. On Wednesday, they asked lawmakers to make at least some changes in the literature. The recently proposed bill is supposed to help businesses evolve. However, the brewers are of the opinion that this text would act against them rather than for them.
Craft Brewers Will Have theri Serving Limit Raised but with a Great Cost
As of recently, lawmakers have been deciding whether to go on with an important bill for the brewery industry or leave things as they are. The new proposal specifies that craft brewers have the permission to serve more of their alcoholic drink than before. This stipulation is extremely welcomed by locals as this would allow them to open a Guinness brewery in Baltimore County. The new location will also act as an important attraction for tourists.
The bill was passed by the House of Delegates two weeks ago. However, what came up as a support for the industry actually turned out to be a distress in disguise. The text of the bill includes other stipulations that might harm businesses. For instance, entrepreneurs might sell more beer to customers, however, their taprooms will be able to remain open for fewer hours. Moreover, craft brewers will not be able to sell beer at was not created entirely on the site.
The political controversy started when the liquor giant Diageo revealed its intention to turn the old Calvert distillery into a touristic attraction that would craft one of the best beers. The location would be specialized in Guinness American Blonde Lager. To be able to support a project of such large proportions, Diageo asked politicians to raise the beer serving limit. The old regulation allowed only 500 barrels per year. This means around 125,000 pints. However, the liquor giant asked for ten times this much.
Lawmakers Consider the Proposed Bill a Compromise
The politicians that accepted the disputed proposal consider it to be a compromise for both parties. Del. Dereck Davis and Del. Talmadge Branch have been both supporting the new bill.
“We passed a bill that gave some and took some from everyone. I think everybody is a little unhappy, and that’s usually a sign of a pretty good bill. No one got everything they wanted.”
The latest version of the bill allows craft brewers to sell 3,000 barrels per year. However, a third of this amount can only be sold to and repurchased from a distributor. Moreover, taprooms can stay open until 9 p.m. during the week and 10 p.m. on weekends. Another demand is that the served beer can only be the one created at the on-site brewery.
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