Flying Dog Brewing’s Legislative Hangover

We recently reported that Flying Dog’s ambitious plans to build a $2.55 million brewery, had been put on ‘permanent hold.’ And now we know the ‘buzz-killing’ reasons why…more mindless moves by misguided (or maybe mislead) legislators.

When Flying Dog Brewing moved from Denver to Frederick, Maryland, it was because they wanted to find a new home that would allow them the ability to prosper and grow.

And grow they did, Flying Dog is currently Maryland’s largest craft beer producer and they sensed an opportunity to take their success even further with the help of a new bill sponsered by State Legislators…

Help that the state didn’t feel like giving to Flying Dog (or any of the state’s many craft brewers for that matter).

So here’s the deal according to a Frederick News-Post report…

Flying Dog backed away from their plans to build a new brewery and an expansive taproom (that would have would have been 5x’s the size of their existing facility and increased their production capability by 8 million cases annually), because of flawed legislation that didn’t raise the yearly limit on brewery taprooms beer sales to reasonable levels….

That same bill, when finally approved, also limited the hours those taprooms could be open, so they wouldn’t compete with the state’s bars and taverns (a truly bogus consideration that smacks of political dining-out with persuasive lobbyists).

And there are more unfortunate details that led to Flying Dog’s CEO Jim Caruso decision to bail on plans, that would have that would have allowed the brewery to increase their production capability by 8 million cases annually, generated all kinds of taxable income, and god-knows how many jobs, in Maryland.

The bill did raise the yearly limit on beer sales at brewery taprooms from 500 barrels to 2,000. But Maryland’s brewers, were asking for no limit on sales, but could have worked with 5,000-barrel cap.

The law also ended up ridiculously dictating that breweries have to sell their beer to wholesale companies, then buy back 1,000 barrels of its own beer to sell in the taprooms!

We really love that part ( more late-night dinners this time with distribution lobbyists).

So another day and more misguided policy from clueless state legislators, that limits opportunity for Flying Dog and the state’s many other small and independent in Maryland.

Nice job gentleman…now go take a lunch.




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