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DISCUS Plans Ballot Push To Boost Spirits Access In Colorado

March 24, 2016

The Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S. (DISCUS) is submitting two ballot initiatives aimed at expanding retail access to spirits in Colorado ahead of the November election. The first would allow distilled spirits sales in grocery stores, as well as full-strength beer and wine (currently only 3.2% beer is sold in groceries). The other initiative would raise the number of off-premise licenses permitted per holder to 10 licenses, up from the current limit of one license. DISCUS said the initiatives are aimed at leveling the retail playing field among drinks categories while increasing choice and convenience for consumers.

DISCUS’s play comes as Colorado’s liquor laws remain the subject of intense discussion within the state. A separate ballot push by supermarkets would allow full-strength beer and wine in groceries and convenience stores, but not spirits. Meanwhile, state legislators have been exploring compromise proposals aimed at ironing out differences among various groups, also including independent liquor stores that are adamantly opposed to the proposed changes.

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