Craft brewer bill signed into law

[private]Legislation that opens the spigot just a little bit for craft brewers and distillers to provide their products to consumers was signed into law Wednesday.

Gov. Nathan Deal okayed SB 63, a bill sponsored by Sen. Hunter Hill (R-Atlanta) that allows craft brewers and distillers to give away a limited amount of their product as part of a paid tour of the facility.

Hill’s measure was the latest in a string of attempts to amend Georgia’s “three-tier” system of distributing and selling alcoholic beverages so that craft brewers can sell directly to consumers and brew pubs can sell their products for off-premises consumption.

The language applying to brew pubs was drained from SB 63 prior to its passage, however, and the bill still does not allow craft brewers to make retail sales – they can only give away up to 72 ounces of beer as a “souvenir” from a paid tour of their facilities.

“We know it’s difficult to get any legislation passed, much less legislation that’s going to have the perception of changing things that have been done for a long time,” said Hill, who called SB 63 a step in the right direction.

Georgia is one of only five states that still does not allow any form of retail sales by craft brewers.

© 2015 by The Georgia Report

[/private]

Tags: brew pubs , craft brewers , Hunter Hill