Minnesota Brewpub Distribution

Sep. 15, 2016

Elliot Ginsburg co-authored with Erin Conway on this article that was published in Minnesota Beer. This article was the first that we published.  It dealt with an issue that was somewhat under the radar – brewpub regulation in Minnesota.  Minnesota brewpubs are not permitted to sell their products to wholesalers or other retailers.  The same year that breweries passed the Surly Bill in Minnesota, several brewpubs tried to change the law in a way that would allow them to sell their product to wholesalers or retailers.

The wholesalers in Minnesota opposed the brewpub idea and their attorney gave a presentation to the legislative committee, claiming that the proposed brewpub law would violate the U.S. Constitution’s dormant commerce clause.  The wholesalers’ attorney is an excellent attorney – we, however, took the position in our article that brewpubs in Minnesota should have been able to pass their proposed law and there would have been no dormant commerce clause issue.