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Wondering where this fight over self distribution of beers is coming from? I certainly was. Well, if you go to the National Beer Wholesalers Association page you can see their rationale for pushing all beer sales through distributors. Without them we'd apparently be drinking poison and dying all the time.
Here is a decent article outlining the fight over self distribution nationally. http://www.examiner.com/article/small-brewers-battle-for-self-distributi...
Also, this page shows you the states that still have self distribution and describes the relevant laws. http://www.brewersassociation.org/pages/government-affairs/self-distribu...
So, it looks like the NBWA is really trying to eliminate these self distribution laws and we just got to experience the methods.
I have recently become aware of some major issues in Sen. Valentines SB248. Written to help big brewers who have found themselves too successful to qualify for the small brewer discount, SB248 is blatantly anti small business.
SB248 contains language requiring small brewers to sell their product through a distributor instead of directly as is currently allowed. This will have a major impact on our small brewers and seems specifically designed to give additional advantage to the big brewers who already dominate the local distributors. Overall this bill is not small business friendly and throws the smaller brewers under the bus to increase the profits of the large brewers.
Our small eastern and southern Utah breweries will be hit especially hard by this new law. Moreover, we will most likely no longer be able to get several of our favorite breweries beers at The Bayou. With several new small breweries coming on line in Utah this is an even more pressing issue. SB 248 must be stopped.
Ask your representative to vote against this bill in its current form. It is anti-small business and anti Utah brewers.
You can find your Representative and Senator using the district map on the Utah Legislation website.