Grocers file initiatives to get liquor on supermarket shelves - KPTV - FOX 12

Grocers file initiatives to get liquor on supermarket shelves

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Voters may get the option to kick the state out of the liquor business. If it happens, you could soon buy liquor in the supermarket.

The Northwest Grocers Association filed five initiatives Monday to change the state operation to an open market.

For consumers, it would mean one stop shopping at the grocery store.

"In Washington, it didn't make that much of a difference, because they apparently heap some of their own taxes on it," grocery shopper David Leeper said.

"I think it's much more convenient, one stop shop, you know. Saves gas and everything," grocery shopper Thaddeus Thomas said.

But, getting the alcohol to those shelves is more complicated.

For smaller distilleries, it's a change that could threaten their businesses, and some say they're not in favor.

"What small craft distilleries need is equal access to the market, kind of a level playing field, which the current market provides," said craft distiller Tom Burkleaux.

"It would definitely change the landscape completely. We would have to cope with new situation," craft distiller Andrea Loreto said.

In February, lawmakers are expected to vote on a bill that would put liquor in grocery stores but would allow the state to control sales and licensed liquor stores.

The grocers association says it wants the state out altogether.

The liquor control commission says that would be a major cut to state revenue and jobs.

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