‘A win-win for the state’: Craft brewery reform becomes law
Act No. 550 will allow Crying Eagle’s lakefront project to move forward
Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - We first told you about Senate Bill 450 back in April, when the craft brewery legislation was first introduced. Now that bill has become law, Act No. 550.
“So this is a win-win for the state of Louisiana. It’s a win for microbreweries across the state. It’s also win for our local microbrewery that’s we’re so proud of, which is Crying Eagle Brewery,” said state Senator Jeremy Stine (R).
Something Sen. Stine and brewery owner Eric Avery have been working for, craft brewery reform, was finally passed into law.
“It’s just a huge weight off my shoulders, and I can look at this site and I can see what’s coming, and I know before too long we’ll be breaking ground and getting this thing built,” said Avery, owner and president of Crying Eagle Brewing Company in Lake Charles.
Prior to this legislation, Louisiana law stated that 100% of the beer sold at breweries had to be brewed on site, which is one of the first things Senator Stine wanted to help change after being elected in November.
“Some of the frankly archaic legislation, or current legislation that they had in place with some of these microbrewery bills, I knew that reform needed to take place. We needed to see these changes happen, and the reforms that needed to take place with some of these older laws. I was just anxious to get in there and fight for change,” said Sen. Stine.
Now, this new legislation signed by the governor last month will allow Crying Eagle to transfer beer made at the McNeese Street location over to their upcoming lakefront location.
“That was going to be instrumental for us to be able to make the project financially viable and not have to recreate the same brewing systems and packaging lines that we have at our McNeese property,” said Avery.
Avery says they will still brew beer at the lakefront property, but calls this law a major hurdle that he and Senator Stine have accomplished to get the lakefront project going.
“Great not only for the city in the region, but everyone passing through here on I-10 are really going to get to see Lake Charles bouncing back. We’re just so anxious and looking forward to it,” said Sen. Stine.
Avery says while the industry could use more updating, he’s taking this win for now, and he is proud of what was accomplished in this last legislative session.
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