Does More Wine Lead to More Crime?

Some readers probably live in locales where you have to go to a  "package store" to buy your wine. That is, you can’t buy wine in a grocery store or a or elsewhere…just a package store.

The situation is testament to the myriad of wine laws, some very odd, that exist across the country. In Massachusetts there is a move afoot to change the laws regarding alcohol sales and the entrenched ones are naturally fighting back.

The Massachusetts Food Association, an association connected to the grocery store industry would like to see the monopoly on wine sales broken by allowing grocery stores to easily obtain a licenses to sell wine and alcohol. Legislation to this effect failed in the legislature not too long ago. So, the association is attempting to take the issue directly through the ballot initiative process. The package store association already has tried to block even the collection of signatures for the ballot initiative, but failed. over 80,000 signatures have been delivered to the appropriate authorities asking for an election by the people to decide the issue.

There is a limit now on the number of retail alcohol establishments allowed in each community and that limit is based on population. I know a number of cities in CA alone that would love such a restriction if only to drive out liquor stores in inner cities that seem to attract crime.

It will be interesting to see how citizens of Massachusetts react to this proposal. Certainly the state’s Package Store Association will oppose it making the argument that more liquor stores will lead to crime. This claim of course leads one to ask certain questions about the currently established package stores.

We’ll be watching this one closely to see how citizens see the relationship between crime and alcohol sales.

Posted In: Wine Business


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