To help Minnesota’s liquor industry recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, Senator Karla Bigham (DFL-Cottage Grove) has introduced bipartisan legislation that would provide a temporary tax credit for Minnesota’s brewers, liquor retailers, and wholesalers who had to buy back or dump their products, or purchase Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) supplies.
“The COVID-19 pandemic was a tremendous challenge to industries throughout the state, and few were disrupted as greatly as our brewers, liquor stores, and wholesalers,” said Senator Bigham. “Minnesota needs to take a strong look at many aspects of our liquor laws, but this bill is something everyone can agree needs to move forward now. Our brewers and the industry around them are a big part of our communities from Twin Harbors to Hastings to Worthington and everywhere in between. SF 2064 can throw a lifeline to help out an emerging industry in Minnesota that has been one of those hardest hit by the pandemic.”
Many wholesalers in the liquor industry had to buy kegs back from bars and restaurants over the past 12 months. On average, between returned kegs (which would have been dumped) and dumping straight from the tank, breweries lost between $5,000 and $45,000 over the course of 2020. In addition, breweries currently spend anywhere from $300-$2,000 per month on PPE, as well as $10,000 and $25,000 on infrastructure and equipment to comply with the restrictions. This includes air filters, tables, partitions, tents, new point-of-sale systems to accommodate touch-less sales and reservations.