North Carolina craft breweries are fighting back against corporate welfare.
On Monday, Charlotte-based craft brewers sued the state of North Carolina over antiquated state laws restricting their ability to self-distribute their product.
Last month, despite widespread support, the North Carolina General Assembly killed a provision in House Bill 500 that would raise self-distribution production caps from 25,000 barrels to 200,00 barrels produced annually.
The proposed legislation would have provided new opportunities for business growth for over 200 independent breweries which employ nearly 10,000 North Carolinians across the state.
The brewers’ suit fights economic protectionism and stresses,
With the emergence of North Carolina’s small craft brewery industry, the landscape has changed entirely…the old laws aimed at preventing a few mega breweries from capturing 100 percent of the market also apply to each of North Carolina’s …breweries, which each hold a tiny percentage of the craft beer market.
Todd Ford, owner of NoDa Brewery, one of the two craft breweries filing suit against the state of North Carolina told the Charlotte Observer,
We felt we won on the policy part but the politics and cronyism were more successful than we were … even though we had the support of many members … it didn’t seem like leadership had any interest in allowing this to come to a vote.
This law punishes entrepreneurs and small business owners by stifling competition and artificially inflating prices, thereby harming both craft brewers and consumers.
North Carolina entrepreneurs deserve the opportunity to pursue their passions and grow their businesses as they choose. They should not be hindered by arbitrary production caps and stringent government regulations which allow the state to pick winners and losers.
Corporate welfare is not only a threat to the millennial-driven craft brewing industry – it’s threatening industries across the board, stifling opportunities for young people nationwide. Learn more about our fight against corporate welfare — join our email list for further updates.