New law raises sales limits for breweries


STATE HOUSE – The General Assembly has approved and the governor has signed legislation sponsored by Rep. Justine A. Caldwell and Sen. Melissa A. Murray to double the limits on beer and spirits customers can purchase at one time from Rhode Island breweries and distilleries.

“The growing popularity of our local breweries and distilleries is an economic development opportunity for Rhode Island. These businesses draw visitors from all over New England and beyond, many of whom like to stock up on the product they love before they go home. We need to enable the small businesses that make up this industry to respond to the demand and so they can expand and thrive. They succeed, their customers bring home what they want and contribute to our economy, and the state reaps tax revenue,” said Senator Murray (D-Dist. 24, Woonsocket, North Smithfield).

The legislation (2021-H 5255A, 2021-S 0199A), which was passed by the Assembly July 1, was signed by the  governor yesterday and took effect immediately, allows breweries, brewpubs, distilleries and wineries to sell as much as two cases of beer — 48 12- or 16-ounce bottles or cans —  or 1500 ml of distilled spirits per visitor, per day, to be sold in containers that may hold no more than 72 ounces, for off-premises consumption. Previous law allowed half those amounts.

“Breweries are all small businesses, and it doesn’t make any sense for our state to stifle their potential and ability to succeed. They need higher limits to meet customers’ expectations and be competitive with similar businesses in the region. These are businesses that add character and charm to our communities while also contributing to our economy. Our laws should support and encourage their success,” said Representative Caldwell (D-Dist. 30, East Greenwich, West Greenwich).



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