Gov. Lamont signs bill allowing craft breweries to sell more beer

New Haven

Surrounded by members of the beer industry and state government all holding glasses of beer, Governor Ned Lamont signed a bill into law that lets craft breweries sell more of their product to the public.

That legislation raises limits that had severely restricted sales in one of the state’s fastest-growing industries.

“Sometimes it’s good for government to get out of the way and let small business grow and prosper,” said Governor Ned Lamont (D-CT). “Especially when they have an amazing product like they do here at Tribus.”

While breweries have been able to serve as much of their beer as they want in taprooms on their premises, there have been tight limits on how much of their beer they could sell for people to take home.

Related: Bill increasing amount of beer consumers can buy from craft breweries moves forward

The old law said you could not buy more than 19 16-ounce cans or bottles in a day. If that sounds weird it’s because, technically, the limit was 9 liters of beer per day. That has now gone up to 9 gallons a day, and 9 gallons works out to 72 16-ounce cans, which works out nicely to exactly three cases. 

There was quite the beer brawl in the legislature this year. The big breweries and their distributors fought against increases for small breweries, but the craft beer industry is growing very quickly. 

Craft beer makers call themselves Connecticut’s fastest growing industry. There are 90 breweries in Connecticut right now. Lawmakers passed this bill by large margins in both chambers in order to keep that momentum going.

“The number of jobs that were created as a result of passing this bill, in the industry,” said State Sen. Kevin Witkos (R-Avon), a proponent of the bill. “And the millions and millions of dollars that this will bring into the state coffers.”

This law also allows hard cider manufacturers to sell cider and apple wine by the glass and bottle, which visitors can drink on the premises.

The governor signed the bill into law at 11 a.m. Monday. 

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