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Home Brewers Could Take Part In Beer Festivals Under Bill Passed By Mo. Senate

The St. Louis Brewers Heritage Foundation says almost 60 breweries are operating or planning to launch in the St. Louis area.
Veronique LaCapra | St. Louis Public Radio

Legislation that would allow home brewers to bring home-made beer to festivals has passed the Missouri Senate.

Under Senate Bill 114, home-brewers could give away free samples to guests at beer festivals and tastings, but would not be allowed to sell them.  The sponsor, State Senator Eric Schmitt(R, Glendale), says an emergency clause was added so that home brewers can take part in this year’s Brewer’s Heritage Festival in St. Louis.

“They had been admitted in the past, but because they’re not specifically allowed under the law, (they) were denied last year," Schmitt said.  "That festival is in June, so if we didn’t have an emergency clause they would be barred from participating again.”

The bill also contains language that would allow trains to serve alcoholic beverages while stopped, allow smaller excursion vessels on Table Rock Laketo serve liquor, and expand the hours that alcohol can be served at bowling alleys.  State Senator Ed Emery (R, Lamar) took exception to those additional provisions.

"I’ve experienced in the time that I have been in the legislature what I call ‘alcohol creep’…no matter what step we give, there’s always another step," Emery said.  "I understand kind of the separate issue of home brewing, but I believe that we are seeing that same kind of creep in this bill.”

Emery cast the lone “no” vote.  The bill now goes to the Missouri House.

Follow Marshall Griffin on Twitter:  @MarshallGReport

Marshal was a political reporter for St. Louis Public Radio until 2018.

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