By Stan Bush
DENVER (CBS4) – Liquor stores are worried about convenience and grocery stores selling full strength beer and malt beverages even if grocery giant’s products don’t cross over into their business.
“It affects us for obvious reasons,” said Baker Wine & Spirits owner Timmy Martin. “We could lose business, but it also affects the consumer.”
Martin sells hard-to-find beer, wine and spirits; items large grocery stores are banned or unlikely to sell. Martin worries the shift in the market will make it cost prohibitive for distributors to carry what he sells.
“They wouldn’t be able to have an expansive list to choose from if those stores have control over the brands that are being distributed,” says Martin.
Lawmakers are considering a list of grievances surrounding the expansion of alcohol sales to convenience and grocery stores. An agreement last year ended a long political battle allowing big box stores to sell full strength beer that irked liquor stores, who are hopeful new regulations could limit the deal.
“(Large liquor stores) are going to suffer just like we’ll suffer and the consumer will suffer,” warns Martin if the new regulations aren’t adopted. “Hopefully we can insulate ourselves a little bit, but not forever.”