Brewers of Pennsylvania

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BOP Response to PLCB Legal Advisory Opinion

(HARRISBURG, PA) We as the small beer Brewers of Pennsylvania employ an estimated 10,000 employees earning $296 million in wages and generating $1.1 billion in direct economic benefits to communities throughout the state.

We represent family breweries and brave start-up companies which depend on the quality of our beers and a loyal following to compete against the huge out-of-state beer companies. In addition to advocating for more consumer convenience, we have adhered to Pennsylvania laws in place since Prohibition which forbid our production of certain packages, like 18 packs.

While we are grateful for any new opportunities to market our products, while addressing our customer’s interest in convenience and package diversity, today’s announcement by the PLCB strikes a blow to the craft brewing industry.

Today we can provide 6 packs and even 12 packs for sale at distributors but nearly all of our members do not have manufacturing and packaging capability to offer 18 packs.  Foreign-owned, mega-brewers have such predatory, “loss leader” packages in states all around us and today’s PLCB decision serves up a competitive disadvantage that can be destructive to small businesses, such as our suppliers, across the state.

Last year, we proudly championed new legislation that would allow our distributor partners to sell 6 packs, 12 packs and growlers to our consumers.  This legislation failed but we remain committed to the Legislative process as the appropriate mechanism to effect change, not a change in the law through the interpretation of an administrative agency. We strongly believe that the PLCB have exceeded their legal authority and obligation to the welfare of citizens of Pennsylvania in today’s ruling and we look forward to the coming dialogue with our elected leaders to improve this move toward the consumer beer retail convenience that we have consistently advocated for many years.  Today’s ruling, though an advance for all who celebrate the diversity of beer brands and flavors, has failed on some levels and has inexplicably handed a huge advantage to out-of-state, global brewing entities.  We believe this decision will have deleterious effects on the Pennsylvania economy and sacrifices quality, variety and potentially, PA jobs.

About the Brewers of Pennsylvania
The Brewers of Pennsylvania is a 501c6 trade association that brings together leaders of Pa.-based breweries in order to promote and protect the brewing industry in the state.  Established in 2011, the Brewers of Pennsylvania serves the consuming public of Pa. by encouraging brand diversity in the market.