At Cellars Wine & Spirits in Woodbury, "We sell a ton of Coors Light."
And will continue to, manager Thad Norlinger added Wednesday afternoon.
“It’s business as usual,” he said. “We’re not pulling anything off the shelves.”
MillerCoors, the company that brews and distributes Coors Light, Miller Lite and Blue Moon, among others, failed to renew its brand label registration with the state before the shutdown began, said Doug Neville, a spokesman for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, which oversees liquor regulation, according to a report in the Star Tribune. MillerCoors and almost 40 of its products could be pulled from store coolers and bar taps.
A MillerCoors spokesman told the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal that the company paid its branding fees two weeks before the shutdown, but paid too much and had to write a second check. That apparently delayed the process for renewing the three-year licenses.
"We followed all state laws," Julian Green told the Business Journal. "We have 39 brands at stake here in one of the most important markets in the country during one of the most important seasons. … We take this very seriously."
But it isn’t just the major brewer that could have issues because of the shutdown, Norlinger said. A seasonal beer from California-based Sierra Nevada may run into the same problem, he said.
John Farrell, the owner of the Minnetonka Haskell’s, which has a location in Woodbury, said the liquor store reached out to MillerCoors officials but hadn’t heard back on Wednesday.
“We’ve heard absolutely nothing except what’s been reported on the news,” he said.
“It would be a substantial amount of product for us. But if they don’t have a license, we can’t sell it,” Farrell added. “Sure it’d be a loss of revenue for us.”
Farrell was quick to note that that Haskell’s won't be the only one “out” of the brands—no one will have them, so people will just “buy something else.”
“This is the first touch of the government shutdown on our stores,” he said.
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