9 thoughts on “More Thoughts on I-1100 and 1105

  1. Thank you for the response. And also, I appreciate the rhetoric. If there is one thing I believe more than anything else, it’s that educated voters make educated decisions no matter how they feel about an issue, and that is important.

    Please, don’t get the impression that I don’t believe in local business. Running one myself, I understand the importance. One of the reason I am for I-1100 is all the local bars and restaurants that will benefit from not having to deal with the state-run liquor stores anymore.

    I just have to ask myself “if we don’t do it now, then when?” We cannot count on our legislation to do it for us and if neither of these measures pass, who is going to spend the resources to get it on the ballot in the near-term future?

    Lastly, I just feel the environment beer has been operating under isn’t the best for the consumer. You refer to what will happen in your post as “back-room deals” and “extortion” but really, isn’t it just negotiating bulk discount? Isn’t that same thing that happens in other industries?

    When Boundary Bay buys its local Cider from Cloud Mountain Farms, or Salmon out of Lummie Bay, or any of the other food products you sell, do you not also use your purchasing power to help lower the costs of your ingredients in order to lower production costs and provide the consumer with a better price?

    Bottom line for me. Washington state needs to be out of the liquor business and the beer industry should operate under the same rules and regulations as all other industries (with the obvious exception to selling to minors and all that jazz).

    I love Boundary Bay beer, and will continue to consume it and serve it at my restaurant no matter how much Anheuser-Busch tries to pay me not to.

    (Also, just some food for thought, Costco already has a policy that it does not accept payment or freebies in exchange for shelf-space. Although I think we can all agree Costco cares a lot more about their consumers than most big businesses, maybe it’s a Washington thing).

  2. Bottom line, what we believe is that businesses should be run at and thrive on the local level. That is what is, fundamentally, most important to us. That is what we object to in these initiatives. We welcome your opinion and are simply trying to be clear about how these initiatives will affect our industry.

  3. I would have to disagree with you on that one. Go to your local convenience store and try to find a can of coke. Between smaller soda companies (Jones Soda, Thomas Kemper) you see all kinds of other producers offering new and innovative takes on soda (much like craft style ales have done with beer). Most of these are classified as “energy drinks” but are basically new takes on soda (the equivalent of offering up an IPA amongst all the big beers ‘American Lagers’ in beer terms) offering up an alternative to Coke/Pepsi, and their producers are thriving right now.

    You have avoided my larger question though. Are you trying to tell me that you believe similar laws should be in place for all industries?

  4. And the current state of soda companies is exactly what we are hoping to avoid! In grocery stores you can pretty much choose between Pepsi products or Coke products with a few (maybe three?) choices from other companies thrown in. We all know there’s lots more soda being produced out there by small, independent craft companies, but consumers in stores have no access to these products because they can’t keep up with Pepsi and Coke throwing in huge discounts/freebies in order to secure their shelf space in the market.

  5. Happy to elaborate. Currently a soda company can offer bulk discounts to a grocery store because they buy so much product. An ice-cream maker can offer a store some incentives in exchange for shelf-space. A pizza place can offer schools pizza at cost in order to have their pizza is served for lunch or events.

    Why should all these other industries be allowed to do these things, but not beer?

    (For the record, I am against I-1105. I do not think you or any other alcoholic beverage manufacturers should be forced to use 3rd party distribution).

  6. Shawn, can you elaborate some on your question in light of our arguments here? I’m not quite sure what you are asking. We are not opposed to “conducting business in the marketplace just like all other forms of commerce.” We are simply expressing our concerns about these initiatives forcing us to use a distributor (instead of distributing ourselves like we’ve always done) and in our small business being overrun by the big corporations favored in I-1100. Perhaps you are right in saying big business has always come out ahead and that these initiatives are simply bringing that same hierarchy to craft brewing, but do two wrongs make a right? We believe in small businesses and in building relationships with our community and with our accounts. Neither of these initiatives support doing business with those goals in mind.

  7. I’ve got a simple question, why should there be laws in place that make it so manufacturers of alcoholic beverages (brewers, wineries, distilleries) are not allowed to conduct business in the marketplace just like all other forms of commerce?

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