Why There are Fewer Breweries in the South

by Rachel Baker on April 13, 2015

I’ve traveled through the bible belt from Virginia to Texas, around the Carolinas and through Georgia. I lived in the Southwest and traveled through New Mexico, Denver, and Portland. My experiences in both these regions were completely and utterly different when it came to amount of alcohol consumed. I remember visiting my uncle in Texas and he had to whip out a card to buy beer. I knew right then and there I would never live in a dry county…ever. I am not a big drinker, but the thought of having to buy a card that allowed me to drink at a restaurant…? Suffice it to say, my experience in Portland was COMPLETELY different – it seemed there was a brewery on every corner (not really but they were everywhere); and when I lived in New Mexico, I began to see microbrews popping up at all the older clubs that were striving to revive business.

According to the article below, the reason for the difference in the brewery experience has a lot to do with the amount of Baptists in a state. While at first glance this seems silly, its worth exploring where politician money comes from and how this money affects local and state laws.

Here’s the Article: Why the South Is the Region With the Fewest Breweries

Around the nation, big beer producers contribute to the campaigns of politicians who will support policies that discourage competition from local upstarts—for example, taxes on breweries and laws that prevent breweries from selling their kegs directly to consumers (instead of through a distributor). But what’s unique about the South is that there’s a voting bloc—the Baptists—whose moral stance against alcohol happens to align with large producers’ desires to keep new competitors from getting started in the business. The support of Baptists provides Southern politicians with a reason to hinder brewers that politicians in other regions don’t have. As a result, the states with the most Baptists tend to have the fewest breweries.

This article was written by: Rachel Baker – Click to follow on Twitter; or you can follow her at The Crafty Veteran on Bloglovin

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