The State Supreme Court has ruled uniamously that Wegmen’s and other grocery stores with restaurants are allowed to apply for retail beer licenses, which allow them to sell six packs and even liquor in their stores. This is a big victory for “free the beer” advocates, and dovetails nicely with Gov.-elect Corbett’s intent to privatize liquor stores across the state.
It’s no secret that we support the privatization of the antiquated liquor control system in Pennsylvania. The Keystone State is one of a handful of states that still regulate both the retail and wholesale distribution of alcohol, with little benefits to its residents.
This ruling brings us one step closer to ending the state monopoly over alcohol, and the plaintiff in the case, Malt Beverage Distributors Association, has seen the handwriting on the wall. Their organization is rightly worried about competition they will face if privatization becomes law. But these mom and pop shops will still have the opportunity to do business, and may even reap greater profits as they will be able to exercise more flexibility in what they carry.