Shutdown hinders breweries, slows new brews

    7:16 PM, Oct 10, 2013   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - All new bottled and canned beer sold across state lines must be approved by the federal government, and now because of the shutdown, new brews are halted.

    Usually Windell Gray would be planning his next business step while cleaning his brewery, but the owner/operator of Refined Ale Brewery in Little Rock puts those thoughts on hold.

    "If I'm in a hurry to put a new brand out, it's not going to happen," said Gray.

    The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau oversees the process and must approve the label as well as the recipe if it uses non-traditional ingredients, which many seasonal beers contain.

    Gray said while he doesn't have a label in need of approval now, the shutdown could hurt his business next year.

    "...Because it's going to run slow anyway, even when they operate. So now they're shut down. Everything is backed up, so you're looking at eight months to a year probably once they start back up," said Gray.

    Even though new brews could be slowed by the shutdown, tried and true traditional beer won't be impacted.

    THV 11 reached out to Diamond Bear Brewery as well, and their owner said they got their new seasonal brew, Dogtown Brown, approved before the shutdown.

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