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Beer sample bill set for Senate committee hearing

Nick Trougakos Published: April 3, 2013
A beer-related bill working its way through the Oklahoma Legislature appears poised to take the next legislative step.

House Bill 1341, which would allow licensed Oklahoma breweries to offer beer samples on site, is pending a hearing in the Senate Business and Commerce Committee. HB 1341 supporter Marshall Brewing Co. reports this morning that the bill is scheduled to be heard at 9 a.m. Thursday.

The bill breezed through a House committee and easily passed the full House. It needs approval from the Senate Business and Commerce Committee before it can take the next step of advancing to the full Senate.

Complicating matters is the fact that the committee faces a Thursday deadline to hear bills that still need to move on for Senate approval.

Marshall Brewing is asking those in favor of the bill to contact members of the Senate Business and Finance Committee, as well as their representatives in the state Senate.

Marshall brewmaster Eric Marshall said passage of the bill would put brewers on level ground with the state’s winemakers, who are allowed to offer on-premise samples.

“We have effectively been doing our job with one hand behind our backs. Few craft breweries have the traditional marketing methods available due to restrained resources,” Marshall said. “Visitors are typically more impassioned to support small local craft producers when they can experience the products and crafting first-hand. The opportunity to explain the business and culture of craft beer and brewing to the public while offering small limited samples will help our industry grow, offer more jobs, pay more taxes, and create a culture of craft beer tourism similar to most other states, like Colorado.

“This is good legislation for  business and tourism in Oklahoma, and we need people to voice their support.”

The roster of the Business and Finance Committee can be found here, while a directory of legislators can be found by clicking here.


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