Sacramento breweries disadvantaged by ‘singles’ law

It’s Sacramento Beer Week, through this Sunday, a time to celebrate locally made craft beer. But there’s a tear in Sacramento’s beer: Local businesses can’t sell single bottles of craft beer in many neighborhoods, including the central city.

Why? There’s an old policy that prohibits the sale of singles in neighborhoods like Midtown and downtown. When this law was implemented, breweries did not sell their product in 22-ounce “bomber” bottles like they do today. In year 2015, however, that size bottle is industry standard. This means a local brewery can’t sell its single beers at stores like the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op, BevMo! or the forthcoming Whole Foods Market.

It’s time to stop putting Sacramento breweries at a competitive disadvantage. We urge city council and staff to work with law enforcement, neighborhood leaders and brewers to come up with a solution to fix Sacramento’s “singles rule.”

Sacramento could be a landmark brewery city, like Portland and San Diego. But if we keep this law, we could also be a place where breweries can’t make a profit—and go out of business.