Wednesday, April 14, 2010
According to the good folks at ShipCompliant, Massachusetts will not be appealing the January decision that freed up out of state wineries to ship directly to consumers in the Commonwealth.
You might recall there being additional hurdles to jump before direct shipping becomes a reality. Things like per-truck licensing requirements for FedEx and UPS and per-consumer volume caps. There's been progress on this front as well. House Bill 317 and Senate Bill 176 have been merged into 4497: Regulating the direct shipment of wine.
I'm pleased to see things moving along on this front but I still believe 4497 could use some work. The current discussion has been all about wineries, but retailers still wouldn't be able to ship in and out of the state. If retailers aren't mentioned as part of this set of changes, we'll continue to have a situation where in-state retailers are limited to the consumers in the state, and consumers can't buy online from out of state retailers. Better to get the laws right once and for all if you ask me and the right thing to do is open the state to legal shipment from out of state retailers.
Failure to do so might lead to out of state retailers complaining that they're being discriminated against as compared to out of state wineries. Further, the state is missing an opportunity to increase revenue by taxing wine shipped from out of state retailers to consumers.
Let's free the grapes and allow wineries and retailers to ship in and out of Massachusetts.
Further Reading: All of the stories we've done on wine shipping laws.
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Question of the Day: If you could only order wine from one out of state winery which would it be and why?