Cheers July/August 2012

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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LEGAL MATTERS By Jason H. Barker Growing the Growler Business A How to play the beer game with growlers. word "growler," there can be little doubt that the future of malt beverages is likely to be fi lled with them. In beer circles, the word growler is now synonymous with a one-half gallon, refi llable glass container that is used by local brew pubs and operators for off -premise consumption. In Portland, Oregon, growlers lthough the debate among scholars and beer afi cionados may linger regarding the etymology of the are literally fl ying out of town. An Oregon brewery with an on-premise location inside the restricted terminal at Portland International Airport sells growlers to in-transit passengers to be carried on planes. A recent survey of state laws revealed that at least three- fourths of the states, including the District of Columbia, permit intended for off -premise consumption of growlers by craft breweries of their own malt beverage products (and in some cases their competitors' products). Also, nearly one-third of the states also permit bars and restaurant to sell growlers for off -premise consumption of any number of competing malt beverage products; and, growth in this category is trending favorably as evidenced by a recently enacted Ohio law allowing certain on-premise retailers to sell growlers in that state. Growlers are advantageous for a A growler produced at North by Northwest in Austin, Texas is displayed on the bar. 14 | JULY/AUGUST 2012 variety of operators for many reasons. Growlers aff ord customers with direct access to tap-quality malt beverage products in aff ordable, bulk containers that are reusable and, accordingly, environmentally favorable over disposable glass bottles or aluminum cans. Also, growlers stimulate brand awareness both as takeaway brew pub souvenirs and bulk service pieces likely to facilitate group tastings and the shared enjoyment of the malt beverage products in and around the comforts of home. ALISON NARRO, COURTESY OF NORTH BY NORTHWEST RESTAURANT & BREWERY

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