Small Indiana wineries lobby for expanded distribution

mall wineries in Indiana are lobbying for the chance to sell their products direct to retailers and restaurants after the number of wine wholesalers in the state plummeted from hundreds to several dozen.

Posted: Feb 24, 2019 12:43 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Small wineries in Indiana are lobbying for the chance to sell their products direct to retailers and restaurants after the number of wine wholesalers in the state plummeted from hundreds to several dozen.

Under current rules, alcohol producers must use a wholesaler rather than self-distribute. But small wineries can have trouble attracting wholesalers because of their size. Small wineries are lobbying lawmakers for access to a micro-wholesaler permit that would allow them to distribute up to 12,000 gallons of wine annually, The Indianapolis Business Journal reported .

The permit has been available for about 12 years, but state law doesn't allow permit holders to also own a winery.

"For a lot of wineries, that's our primary issue this session," said Jim Butler, owner of Bloomington-based Butler Winery and treasurer of the Indiana Winery & Vineyard Association.

Republican Rep. Ed Clere of New Albany has introduced legislation that would allow for businesses to own both a wholesale permit and a winery permit. The move will help wineries grow, he said.

"I just want everybody to have more wine," Clere said. "It's frustrating because small producers are finding it increasingly difficult to get their products into retailers and restaurants."

Wine distributors Republic National and Southern Glazer's both oppose the proposed legislation, said Jim Purucker, the executive director of Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of Indiana, which represents the distributors.

Purucker said he's concerned that larger companies may take advantage of the change and that the 12,000 cap won't stay.

"We can't just say it's only 12,000 gallons," Purucker said. "That limit will just continue to rise all the time."

West Lafayette
Cloudy
65° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 65°
Kokomo
Cloudy
63° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 63°
Rensselaer
Cloudy
63° wxIcon
Hi: 71° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 63°
Fowler
Cloudy
68° wxIcon
Hi: 70° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 68°
Williamsport
Cloudy
67° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 67°
Crawfordsville
Cloudy
64° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 64°
Frankfort
Cloudy
64° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 64°
Delphi
Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 61°
Monticello
Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 61°
Logansport
Cloudy
63° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 63°
Wet, then drier with very warm to hot & humid weather.....
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 735999

Reported Deaths: 13486
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1007151752
Lake54249977
Allen40946680
St. Joseph36335553
Hamilton35829408
Elkhart28844443
Tippecanoe22475219
Vanderburgh22367397
Porter18946311
Johnson18067381
Hendricks17317315
Clark13036192
Madison12762339
Vigo12501249
LaPorte12086215
Monroe11957172
Delaware10755187
Howard10001218
Kosciusko9466117
Hancock8373142
Bartholomew8098156
Warrick7799155
Floyd7690178
Grant7098174
Wayne7072199
Boone6745101
Morgan6611140
Dubois6166117
Marshall6111112
Cass5876105
Dearborn583178
Henry5785105
Noble565984
Jackson503773
Shelby494396
Lawrence4602120
Gibson437192
Harrison436672
DeKalb430585
Clinton428453
Montgomery425889
Whitley398739
Huntington394480
Steuben391057
Miami383968
Knox372890
Jasper372649
Putnam363760
Wabash355380
Adams342755
Ripley340770
Jefferson331881
White317754
Daviess298399
Wells292081
Decatur285992
Fayette282162
Greene280585
Posey272034
LaGrange268970
Scott267554
Clay261347
Washington242132
Randolph242081
Spencer232931
Jennings230949
Starke219354
Fountain213946
Sullivan212242
Owen203356
Jay197830
Fulton196040
Carroll190420
Orange184754
Perry184637
Rush174025
Vermillion170044
Franklin168535
Tipton163445
Parke146716
Pike135634
Blackford135132
Pulaski117445
Newton108934
Brown102641
Crawford101415
Benton99014
Martin89515
Warren82615
Switzerland7948
Union71410
Ohio57111
Unassigned0417

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events