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Craft beer brewers calling for NB Liquor policy revisions

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WATCH ABOVE: Craft alcohol producers feel the slow progress by N.B. Liquor doesn’t fairly stack up against their fast growth. Global’s Jeremy Keefe reports – Jun 7, 2016

The New Brunswick Craft Alcohol Producers Association says revisions to Alcool NB Liquor policy are needed in order to encourage microbreweries in the province to grow their business.

The policy originally created in June 2014 is now on its fourth version after revisions were applied in August of that same year and again this past March.

READ MORE: Moosehead to open small-batch brewery to meet demand for greater variety

New revisions are pending -they weren’t disclosed- but equate to “progress but not perfection” according to the NBCAPA.

“We feel that although we’ve made positive progress, we definitely have a ways to go,” says NBCAPA President Stephen Dixon.

Dixon, a local brewer himself and owner of Grimross Brewing Company, says through talks with ANBL, they have begun receiving better rates than before.

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That has allowed him to add to his operation.

“The previous markups were higher than they are today,” explains Dixon.

“With the previous markups I actually was not going to be able to make an expansion that I now am able to do.”

The NBCAPA says expansion by local brewing companies would be good for more than just those making the products.

They hope the economic support they bring will go a long way towards receiving the breaks they are seeking.

NBCAPA President Stephen Dixon says more needs to be done for craft brewers. Jeremy Keefe

“We’re also poised to be able to export outside of the province and outside of the country and those are going to be new dollars coming into our economy,” says Dixon.

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“And that is very, very good for the economy.”

ANBL said in a statement that they remain “committed to supporting the growth of locally produced products” and that “ANBL maintains an open door policy for all suppliers and works to create an environment where all suppliers can achieve their goals.”

Dixon says the two entities have agreed to regular meetings to review policy and seek any necessary changes.

“NB Liquor has agreed to work with us ongoing, meeting on a monthly basis,” he says.

“And we’re optimistic we’re making progress.”

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