That 7 percent threshold was hugely important for such an arbitrary cutoff. It was problematic for cideries for two reasons. One, cideries cannot perfectly control carbonation or alcohol content, but it’s normally between 5 and 8.5 percent. Two, producing a run with a little too much carbonation or alcohol content can result in enormous tax increases.
North Carolina's Alcoholic Beverage Control system is extremely bureaucratic and highly regulated. My new report discusses the ramifications of this state government control over a legal product and considers an alternative system, licensing, already in use by the majority of states.
The John Locke Foundation has released my follow-up report on the need to modernize and free up our alcoholic beverage control system. It opens with a tale of two North Carolina entrepreneurs: Bob, a sweet potato farmer, and Amber, a distiller who makes rum.
Carolina Journal has the story on support for the newly filed House Bill 971 from the N.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association and N.C. Retail Merchants Association. The bill would basically clear a path for private liquor stores in North Carolina.
Reforming North Carolina’s alcohol rules isn’t just about making the big decision about moving on from government control under an unnecessarily complicated ABC control system. It’s also about modernizing here and there, making practical fixes in individual areas of law.