Say it ain't so. Government shutdown pours craft beer down drain

Orlando Sentinel Columnist

Orlando, if you still think you aren't fazed by the federal government shutdown after reading today's column, think again.

The political doltishness in Washington just got a lot more real. Because now we're talking about beer. Specifically, craft beer.

The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, part of the Treasury Department, is shuttered and that means new beers are on hold.

That's got breweries across the country looking at losses as seasonal brews are delayed. This USA Today story gives a good account of the national picture.

Here in Orlando the concern isn't so dire. New beers from Orlando Brewing, for example, don't require approval from that obscure agency I mentioned known as the TTB because Orlando Brewing doesn't ship across state lines.

Last night when I talked with Orlando Brewing President John Cheek he indicated that the brewery's upcoming concoction could be impacted by the shutdown. But I learned this morning from another brewery employee that isn't the case because the brew only requires state approval.

So, rest easy Orlando, the beer known as Babe's Brew with chocolate and mint undertones is not in jeopardy.

If you love craft beer and like to buy brews that come in from out of state, there's still reason to be concerned. The shutdown is also a major setback for new breweries waiting on their final approval to open.

Another business advantage for Cheek.

"No new competition," he said. 

(Note: This post has been updated to correct wrong information that was provided to the Sentinel.)




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