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Weekly Growler Fill | National Beer News Roundup

Weekly Growler Fill | National Beer News Roundup

The BA releases its list of Top 50 Brewers, Mississippi officially allows direct sales to customers at breweries and Maine brewers look to streamline state laws. North, South, East and West – no matter where you live in the U.S., we’ve got you covered on the latest craft beer news. Keep reading to catch the details of these stories and more in this edition of the Weekly Growler Fill.

Brewers Association Releases Top 50 Breweries of 2016

The Brewers Association released its annual lists of Top 50 Craft Brewers and Top 50 Brewers Overall, based on sales by volume. D. G. Yuengling & Son, Inc took the top spot on the craft list, while Anheuser-Busch took the top spot on the overall list. Click the link for the full list and an interactive map of top breweries by state.  [Read full article]

Mississippi Governor Signs Bill; Craft Breweries Will Soon Sell Directly to Customers

Mississippi House Bill 1322
Photo Credit: Lucky Town Brewery

It’s official! Governor Phil Bryant of Mississippi signed 1322 last Wednesday, which will now allow breweries to sell directly to customers. Prior to the passing of the bill, breweries could give away free samples on tours, but were losing out on the crowds that wanted to take beer home. The change goes into effect on July 1 and proponents of the law believe the number of breweries in the state will double. Mississippi is the 49th state to allow direct sales to customers at a brewery (still holding out for Georgia). [Read full article]

Georgia House Passes Long-awaited Brewery, Distillery Bill

Georgia direct sales

Well, at least Georgia isn’t too far behind. Like Mississippi, Georgia is moving towards allowing direct sales to customers of breweries. Senate Bill 85 passed the Georgia House of Representatives last week, which would allow a pre-specified amount of alcohol to be sold directly to customers from breweries and distilleries. When the bill was first introduced, it did not included verbiage for distilleries and was therefore amended. Due to the amendment, the bill will return to the Senate before heading to the desk of Governor Deal. If approved, the law will go into action on September 1st and Georgia will become the last state in US to allow direct sales to customers. [Read full article]

Leinenkugel Teams Up with Hofbräu for Anniversary Beer; Plans New packaging for Entire Portfolio

Photo Credit: Leinenkugel

Leinenkugel is teaming up with German brewer Hofbräu to create a beer for their 150th anniversary. If you love Summer Shandy, I’m sorry but I just cannot bring myself to drink what I refer to as ‘Lysol in a bottle’. Luckily for me and all other shandy-haters, the two breweries are teaming up to create a Märzen-style lager that combines American hops with German malt. The anniversary brew will be released in Leinenkugel’s new packaging. You may not notice too many changes, though. From what I gather, the new packaging is quite similar to the packaging of the past. See for yourself in the side-by-side below. [Read full article]

Leinenkugel side by side
New packaging on left, old packaging on the right.

Maine’s Beer Makers Pursue Law Changes They Say Will Help Growth Continue

Rep. Heather Sanborn, D-Portland and owner of Rising Tide Brewery
Photo Credit:

Maine brewers have banded together to support a pack of legislation that would further boost the brewing industry in the state. The proposed laws would allow: transfer of beer between brewery locations owned by the same brewery (i.e. barrel aging house to taproom), specialty food stores to hold beer tastings, remove requirement of having a wall between area where food and beer is sold for on-premise consumption and where beer is sold to-go. Opponents of the legislation include the Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages & Lottery Operations (BABLO) and distributors. BABLO cites concerns that the proposed changes would undermine the organization’s authority. Distributors want to keep their hands on beer that moves between properties. The bills will need to pass the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee before moving forward. [Read full article]

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