State Lawmakers Vote On Beer Sampling In Grocery Stores

By: Natalie Kaplan Email
By: Natalie Kaplan Email

There's a growing beer culture in North Carolina, some area breweries tell WITN, residents are getting more interested in trying their products but trying is different than buying. That's why one brewer in Kinston says he's thrilled state lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow shoppers to sample his beer in store aisles.

Trent Mooring is taking his passion for beer and turning it into a business.

"It’s actually made with 100% barley, more like drinking a fine wine."

Mother Earth Brewing is set to open in Kinston in about a month. Once open, Mooring's next goal will be selling it. That's why he hopes state lawmakers approve new legislation that would allow grocery stores to sample beer.

Mooring says "It puts a big personal touch on the craft beer scene, we can actually go to retail outlets, customers can put a face to the people who make it, let's them know we care."

Wine sampling has been allowed since 2001, at Fresh Market in Greenville, store managers say it's been a great way for local companies to get the word out about their products.

"You've got customers coming in, sampling wines, buying wines that they typically would not commit to buy, unless they had a chance to try that wine first."

If the measure is approved, Fresh Market District Manager Todd Crouch says, Fresh Market stores would probably hold beer tastings as well.

So, it seems local breweries and local supermarkets want it but will North Carolina lawmakers approve the measure? It could be voted on later this week.

The senate has already poured out a yes vote, now it's up to the house to either cheers the measure or dry it out.


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  • by John Location: Greenville on Jul 27, 2009 at 04:38 PM
    I think this is great, why shouldn't Brewerys be able to give away samples of their beer. Winerys have been able to give away samples in Grocery Stores for years. Thank your legislators for their common sence.
  • by Jules Location: Greenville, NC on Jul 25, 2009 at 10:58 AM
    That Fresh Market manager is HOT!
  • by Wolfgang Location: Chocowinity,NC on Jul 22, 2009 at 02:59 PM
    I could just see it now. I will tell the wife " Dear you go food shopping. I'll be in the beer line. Of all my favorite things to do, The utmost is to have a brew. My love grows for my foamy friend, With each thirst-quenching elbow bend. Beer’s so frothy, smooth and cold– It’s paradise–pure liquid gold. Yes, beer means many things to me… That’s all for now, I gotta pee!
  • by Boo Boo on Jul 22, 2009 at 02:44 PM
    Looks like I will have to take a cab to the store from now on HAHAHAHA
  • by MrT Location: LaNC on Jul 22, 2009 at 12:32 PM
    Even if it is 1-2 oz servings, it is still being served. What effect would this have on the current CCW law that says you can not carry a handgun anywhere that alcohol is served?
  • by Tracy Location: Chocowinity on Jul 22, 2009 at 07:41 AM
    Once Again - "drunks" would not even drink the type of NC craft brewery beer that this law would effect. Samples consist of no more than four 1-2 ounce servings. That is at the most 8 oz. of beer - much less than a bottle of beer. Look up the law (1595)on the General Assembly web site. This can only help the NC craft brewers expand their business - same as wine tastings. If local beer and wine makers become more popular, tourism and the economy in that area could also benefit. That is not stupid.
  • by Jim Location: enc on Jul 22, 2009 at 06:33 AM
    Our state lawmakers must be drunk or on drugs. I guess we'll have to deal with driving through the drunks to get to the grocery store. I can see the headline now.. Child is killed in grocery store parking lot by person sampling beer while grocery store hopping. They need to restrict alcohol consumption just like smoking. Alcohol kills too. This is just plain STUPID!!!!!!!!!
  • by jb Location: nc on Jul 22, 2009 at 04:00 AM
    way to go lawmakers... take the smoking out but give everyone the chance to get a drink in a grocery store no less. hhmmmm no kids there right???
  • by Tracy Location: Chocowinity on Jul 21, 2009 at 10:15 PM
    To MrT and CH - Samples are tiny mouthwash size servings. No one would be getting drunk off this small amount. I'm really not trying to offend anyone, but the people who drink these better beers that would probably be offered are not just out to get drunk. Most heavy drinkers would not even like the specialty beers that would be offered. In my experience, the "drunks" do not like better beers with taste and flavor. They stick to Bud and Natural Light. Not that there is anything wrong with those - just not much flavor.
  • by CH Location: Greenville on Jul 21, 2009 at 06:59 PM
    Well, I can see it now, my husband will be at the store more often sampling the free beer. Along with all the other drunks in Greenville. Stupid idea. There will be more DWI's and you know that if they have free sampling of beers that the drunks will try them all.
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