Someone needs to get Goldilocks on the case in Florida, where the just-right size of beer growler is illegal. It’s only one of three states where it’s illegal to fill 64-ounce beer containers, or growlers, but just fine to serve up as many 32-ounce or 128-ounce growlers as you can carry. It’s confusing and pretty much doesn’t make sense, so brewers and beer lovers are trying to get that law to change.
The size most beer enthusiasts feel is just right happens to be 64 ounces, but that mid-size is banned, reports the Associated Press.
“If you’re bringing some beer home for you and the wife, that’s two beers,” says one enthusiast. “It makes no sense to me. It’s just not logical — 128s are probably too much, 32 is too small. I’d love to get a 64.”
Two Florida lawmakers are pushing bills to legalize half-gallon jugs, but beer distributors are fighting back against both measures.
“It’s really silly. I have in my office a 32-ounce, a gallon and a 64 to show people. And I ask them, ‘Which one do you think is currently illegal?’” said Rep. Katie Edwards, D-Plantation. “They all think the gallon is illegal. They say, ‘Oh, you’re trying to legalize the big one!’ and I say, ‘No, it’s the one in the middle,’ and it’s like, ‘Why is it not legal?’ They don’t get it.”
She doesn’t even drink beer, but says the bill would help sponsor economic development. Visitors can help a business grow by coming in and buying enough beer to take home, but perhaps they don’t want to lug two separate growlers or one ginormous one, when they could just buy a 64-ounce one as customers in other states are able to do.
“It’s really good for small towns because they become a destination and people can bring stuff home from that destination. It’s probably only going to bring people back,” explains the manager of the bar at Amherst Brewing Company in Massachusetts.
Because of the pushback from lobbyists representing certain groups of distributors, the bills will probably be pretty much killed. Those opponents of the 64-ounce growlers say they’re trying to protect the three-tier system of alcohol distribution the federal government put in place after Prohibition ended. A lobbyist for the Florida Beer Wholesalers Association says the state law, which allows for take-home sales at breweries, wasn’t intended for breweries to sell directly to consumers.
“It’s definitely operating in the gray,” he told the AP, adding that he’s not fighting the bill just for the sake of distributors’ profits. “There’s a little to that, but the larger point is about the three-tier system, and that is our larger concern.”
Or perhaps there’s a concern of smaller breweries taking customers away from people who might otherwise buy products from say, Anheuser-Busch. Perhaps.
Fla. brewers push to legalize 64-ounce beer jugs [Associated Press]