Minnesota Shutdown Impacting Alcohol Sales

July 14, 2011

Due to the government shutdown in Minnesota there’s a chance pubs in that state might run out of beer.

Alcohol supplies are dwindling, and in some cases have run out, at hundreds of bars and restaurants across Minnesota because the establishments’ owners fail to renew their state-issued liquor purchasing cards.

Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association executive director Frank Ball tells the Star Tribune it will cripple his industry. The association represents thousands of liquor retailers in Minnesota.

Liquor purchasing cards for about 300 retailers expired June 30 and they have no way to renew their permits until state government is up and running again. Many government functions were closed July 1 because of political gridlock over the state budget.

The government shutdown also is causing a big problem for brewing giant MillerCoors.

The state has told MillerCoors it needs to pull its products from stores, bars and restaurants statewide because of a licensing problem caused by the shutdown.

Department of Public Safety spokesman Doug Neville said that MillerCoors’ “brand label registrations” with the state have expired. The employees who process renewals were laid off when state government shut down July 1 in a budget dispute.

Neville says Chicago-based MillerCoors LLC has been told to come up with a plan for pulling its products in a few days.

MillerCoors officials didn’t immediately return messages from The Associated Press, but told KSTP-TV they will fight the order.

Topics Minnesota

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