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Michigan Bars and Taverns Want Right to Use Promotional Advertising

Slinging beer
Darren Hauck, Getty Images

Watering holes, dive bars and other establishments around Michigan that sling booze for profit are currently fighting for the right to use promotional items branded with the logos of the alcoholic beverages that they sell.

As it stands, the state does not permit the use of such advertising, unless it is first approved by the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.

However, many bar owners say that not being able to serve brands like Budweiser, Amber Bock and Shock Top in glasses brandishing the brewers logo is just “stupid” and ultimately, they would like to see some amendments made to the laws governing these principles.

Recently, a committee of some 21 business owners evaluated Michigan’s liquor laws and offered some constructive criticism in a report that went before the commission.  The proposal asks for wholesalers, distributors and a number of business leaders to have the permission to provide bars with cooperative advertising items featuring brand logos, as well as information about the establishment.

Yet, while there are federal regulations in place to keep wholesalers and distributors from giving away merchandise in exchange for prime display space, it is expected that the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs will consider revising the current statutes in the near future – and the outcome of that could prove beneficial for the industry.

Earlier this week, the Senate passed a bill allowing bars and restaurants to fill growlers for carry-out customers. In addition, the bill also permits wine tasting at farmer’s markets.

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