Liquor Retailers Oppose Wine Sales In Grocery Stores

by Gabe Bullard on October 1, 2008

Hear, read and see our past coverage of Kentucky alcohol laws here and here.

Some local liquor store owners are opposing a renewed effort to expand wine sales into certain Kentucky grocery stores. Legislation to that effect died in the General Assembly this year. Now, a group called the Food with Wine Coalition wants to try again.

“Wine has become an accepted part of a health, balanced diet,” says Coalition consultant Luke Schmidt. “Lifestyles are changing and food store operators decided perhaps now is the time to take a look at the law which hasn’t really been changed since prohibition.”

In Louisville, Old Town Wine and Spirits owner Gordon Jackson says he thinks money might also be a motivating factor.

“They’re businesspeople and they’re trying to grow their business and they’re support for the Kentucky wine thing may be a little bit of a smokescreen,” he says.

The Liquor Barn chain has stopped buying some Kentucky-made wines in an effort to fight the coalition. Jackson’s store doesn’t sell locally-produced wine. Kentucky is among 16 states that don’t allow wine to be sold in food stores.

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