The Kentucky Guild of Brewers is pleased with the passage of House Bill 168 during Thursday’s meeting of the House Economic Development Committee. 15 members voted in favor of passing the bill over the 4 members voting no.
House Bill 168 creates an even playing field for Kentucky craft brewers. At this time a loophole exists in Kentucky’s alcohol regulation policies that allows mega brewers to distribute their own products to the detriment of independent beer distributors and local craft brewers. Local brewers depend upon independent distributors to get their products to market.
“We make great beer here,” said Daniel Harrison of Country Boy Brewing during his testimony in the committee meeting. “We cannot let the world’s largest beer makers squeeze our markets and deny us access to the people who want our products.
Kentucky’s entrepreneurial craft brewers employ local workers, buy local products, and support local charitable causes. Without the passage of House Bill 168, ABInBev and other mega brewers will be able to control more distribution, undercut pricing, and drive Kentucky craft beers off of retail shelves.
Passage of HB 168 will close this inequitable loophole so that free market competition and consumer choice is maintained. “House Bill 168 is now on its way to a full vote by the House of Representatives,” said Adam Watson, President of the Kentucky Guild of Brewers. “We encourage Kentucky’s craft beer fans and supporters of local businesses to call their legislator and urge them to support House Bill 168.”