MN shutdown forcing MillerCoors to pull beer from shelves

Dec 8, 2004
49,071
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Maine
#1
Miller Time in Minnesota is over -- until lawmakers reach a budget deal.

The state's government shutdown, now in its 13th day, will soon force MillerCoors to pull its beer from Minnesota liquor stores, bars and restaurants. A state official says the law requires the company to stop selling products like Coors Light, Miller Lite and Blue Moon imminently because their brand licenses expired.

"I would suspect within days to see that product leave the shelves," said Doug Neville, a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety.

A MillerCoors spokesman said they are fighting the decision, which would decimate one of its largest markets in the country.

“Right now we are exploring all options that are available to us," said spokesman Julian Green. "We are currently in discussions and hoping that we can get a resolution with the state, with the agency that enforces the sale ... of alcohol.”

Neville says MillerCoors must remove the beer because they did not renew their brand label registration with the state before the shutdown began. By law, brewers must renew those registrations -- which show the label on each brand of beer -- every three years.

The company tried to renew in mid-June, but the process got delayed when they wrote a check for too much money. Green said they sent in a new check, which the state received on June 27, but nonetheless got a letter three days later saying their brand licenses had expired.

“We believe we’ve followed all applicable state laws on this," Green said.

Neville said his agency has asked MillerCoors to develop a plan to remove the product from shelves and cease their distribution. He added that Anheuser-Busch will face a similar problem if the shutdown extends to October.

Green said they are not currently working on that plan, hoping they can first overturn the decision.

The development follows news that hundreds of bars and liquor stores across the state are slowly running out of alcohol because they were unable to renew their state-issued purchase cards. But eliminating MillerCoors could have a much larger impact, since it would apply to nearly every liquor retailer in the state.

Mike Madigan, with Minnesota Beer Wholesalers Association, says MillerCoors products represent a 38 percent share of the beer market in Minnesota.

A spokesman for Leinenkugel, which is owned by MillerCoors, says they handle their registration separately and it is good until 2013.

Here is a list of the beers that are affected:

Blue Moon Pale Moon Belgian Style Pale Ale, Coors Banquet, Coors Light, Coors Light 3.2, Foster’s Lager Beer, Foster’s Premium Ale, Grolsch Amber Ale, Grolsch Blonde Lager, Grolsch Light Lager, Grolsch Premium Lager, Hamm’s, Hamm’s Genuine Draft Style, Hamm’s Special Light, Henry Weinhard’s Dark, Henry Weinhard’s Hefeweizen, Henry Weinhard’s Pale Ale, Henry Weinhard’s Private Reserve, Icehouse Beer, Keystone Light Beer 3.2, Killians Irish Red 3.2, MGD Light 64, Mickey’s Ice Ale, Mickey’s Malt Liquor, Miller Genuine Draft, Miller High Life 12/16 oz can, Miller High Life Ice, Miller High Life Light 12 oz can, Miller Lite 3.2%, Miller Lite Beer, Milwaukee’s Best #1 , Milwaukee’s Best Ice, Milwaukee’s Best Light #1 3.2, Molson Canadian, Molson Canadian Light, Molson Golden, Molson Ice, Molson XXX, Olde English 800 Malt Liquor, Sparks Light

Link
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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Jan 12, 2010
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#2
Worst display of a government failure, ever.

It almost sounds like this is intentional by one side in the budget debates, like they're trying to sway the public by "punishing" them for the government's inability to function. Now not only do drinkers want to see this resolved, but everyone employed in the alcohol and related industries.
 

ruckstande

Posts mostly from the shitter.
Apr 2, 2005
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#4
I see this as a great thing. People should stop buying shitty beer.

Sent from my PC36100 using Tapatalk
 

Von Maestro

Registered User
Mar 12, 2010
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#5
Hey Minnesota, what's some of them other beers you've got?
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
78,635
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898
Seattle
#7
I see this as a great thing. People should stop buying shitty beer.

Sent from my PC36100 using Tapatalk
Look at the list. There are some good beers effected.

Blue Moon Pale Moon Belgian Style Pale Ale, Coors Banquet, Coors Light, Coors Light 3.2, Foster’s Lager Beer, Foster’s Premium Ale, Grolsch Amber Ale, Grolsch Blonde Lager, Grolsch Light Lager, Grolsch Premium Lager, Hamm’s, Hamm’s Genuine Draft Style, Hamm’s Special Light, Henry Weinhard’s Dark, Henry Weinhard’s Hefeweizen, Henry Weinhard’s Pale Ale, Henry Weinhard’s Private Reserve, Icehouse Beer, Keystone Light Beer 3.2, Killians Irish Red 3.2, MGD Light 64, Mickey’s Ice Ale, Mickey’s Malt Liquor, Miller Genuine Draft, Miller High Life 12/16 oz can, Miller High Life Ice, Miller High Life Light 12 oz can, Miller Lite 3.2%, Miller Lite Beer, Milwaukee’s Best #1 , Milwaukee’s Best Ice, Milwaukee’s Best Light #1 3.2, Molson Canadian, Molson Canadian Light, Molson Golden, Molson Ice, Molson XXX, Olde English 800 Malt Liquor, Sparks Light
 

Atomic Fireball

Well-Known Member
Donator
Jul 26, 2005
6,323
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#11
Incompetence from a state giving us TWO GOP presidential candidates? Incredible!
Yup, Minnesota has been a haven for GOP presidential candidates in recent history, except for 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008.
 

Creasy Bear

gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh
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Mar 10, 2006
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#12
Wait -- The same company makes Miller and Coors? I had no idea.
MillerCoors Inc., MolsonCoors Inc., etc... they're all giant conglomerates these days.

And what we end up with is a conglomerated, mulatta, MONGREL class of breweries!
 

phillyfranko

Registered User
Jun 1, 2010
5,773
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#13
MillerCoors Inc., MolsonCoors Inc., etc... they're all giant conglomerates these days.

And what we end up with is a conglomerated, mulatta, MONGREL class of breweries!
Yeah, Shit beer...Drink Yeungling beer ...America,s Oldest Family owned Brewery (1876) going to tour the Brewery soon,have a family Re-union up that way...
 

Party Rooster

Unleash The Beast
Apr 27, 2005
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#16
Yup, Minnesota has been a haven for GOP presidential candidates in recent history, except for 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, and 2008.
I can't believe people have already forgotten all about Harold Stassen. :action-sm

Stassen was later best known for being a perennial candidate for the Republican Party nomination for President of the United States, seeking it 8 times between 1948 and 1992 (1948, 1952, 1964, 1968, 1980, 1984, 1988 and 1992
 

Owenay

Those who fail to learn from history are doomed...
May 10, 2007
3,666
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358
Bizarro World
#17
Minn. Shutdown Follow-up: State Demanding MillerCoors Pull Product Over Less Than $1,200

By Tom Blumer | July 14, 2011 | 18:10

Last night, I noted that the State of Minnesota, where the government is shut down but spokesman for the Department of Public Safety Doug Neville is somehow still working, is demanding that MillerCoors pull its products from Gopher State store shelves within days, and identified a number of questions non-inquisitive Minneapolis Star Tribune reporter Eric Roper should have asked and didn't.

One of the questions which didn't make my list, which wasn't intended to be comprehensive, is: "How much money is involved?" As seen in the headline, the answer is so trivial that it almost costs more to think about it than to say what it is. The potential embarrassment over this matter may partially explain why Democratic Farm Labor Governor Dayton appears to have sued for peace this morning (covered later in this post). Readers will also have a hard time believing the penny-ante amount over which retailers whose "buyer's cards" have expired will from all appearances be prevented from buying alcoholic beverages for resale.

To its credit, the Associated Press did get answers yesterday, and reported them in a 3:58 p.m. dispatch by Steve Karnowski. To the AP's and Karnowski's discredit, the amounts involved, which should have appeared by the second paragraph, didn't start showing up until the ninth, and Karnowski made no attempt to describe why the shutdown has taken place, i.e., Dayton chose to shut down the government rather than sign a budget which does not include significant income tax increases.

As you read the following excerpt from Karnowski's writeup, keep in mind that SABMiller, the parent company of MillerCoors, had US sales of $28.3 billion, US earnings before interest, taxes and amortization of $5.0 billion, and per Page 6 of its annual report generated almost $2.5 billion of free cash flow during the year ended March 31 (bolds are mine):

Miller, Coors and other popular beers may disappear from Minnesota stores and bars within days because brewing giant MillerCoors lacks the proper licenses due to the state's government shutdown.

MillerCoors has 39 "brand label registrations" with the state that expired last month, and the employees who process renewals were laid off when state government shut down July 1 in a budget dispute, Doug Neville, a spokesman for the Department of Public Safety, said Wednesday.

State alcohol enforcement officials who remain on the job recently told officials with Chicago-based MillerCoors LLC that they need to come up with a plan soon for pulling their products he said.

"I think we're looking at days instead of weeks before some action needs to be taken but I don't have an exact date," Neville said.

... Minnesota requires that brewers, wineries and distillers take out brand label registrations for products they sell in the state. They cost only $30 and are good for three years. MillerCoors' registrations expired June 13.

Green said MillerCoors submitted its paperwork and the check on time, on the 13th. Neville said the state didn't receive them until June 15, two days after the registrations expired.

Whether it was the 13th or 15th might not have mattered because the check was for $1,380, a $210 overpayment, Green said. That delayed the process. The state received a second check for the right amount on June 27, he said.

But by that time, Neville said, employees in the department's alcohol enforcement division didn't have time to process the renewals before they were laid off. On top of that, he said, the computer database they use to process renewals was taken offline along with some other systems so the department's skeleton IT crew can concentrate on maintaining more critical systems relied upon by law enforcement agencies.

... (Retailers are) required to have $20 "buyer's cards" to purchase liquor from wholesalers, and they must be renewed annually by the same laid-off employees that process brand registrations. Hundreds of those cards have expired or will soon.
Words fail. The state thinks it's going to force MillerCoors to pull product over $1,170 ($1,380 minus $210), which it apparently has in hand and may have already taken to the bank? And it's going to stop retailers from selling alcoholic beverages for lack of 20 bucks?

The Minneapolis Start Tribune's Eric Roper reported on the controversy yesterday. Incredibly, he did not cite a single dollar amount in his report. I wonder why? Could it be that if readers knew the small dollar amounts at stake, they would realize that the state, possibly goaded by Mark Dayton and his apparatchiks, might be engaging in arbitrary action for the express purpose of inflicting pain which might somehow work to the governor's political advantage?

If that's Dayton's calculation, we can thankful that it appears not to be working, according to Fox 9 in the Twin Cities (HT BizzyBlog commenter dscott):

Governor, Republicans Discuss Ending Minnesota Shutdown

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican leaders went behind closed doors at 2 p.m. Thursday to discuss a budget proposal and some additional conditions that could end the state government shutdown.

The meeting comes after the governor sent a letter Thursday morning to House Speaker Kurt Zellers and Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch, saying he "reluctantly" agrees to accept the Republican budget proposal from June 30 if it will end the government shutdown.

“Despite my serious reservations about your plan, I have concluded that continuing the state government shutdown would be even more destructive for too many Minnesotans,” Dayton wrote in the letter. “Therefore, I am willing to agree to something I do not agree with – your proposal – in order to spare our citizens and our state from further damage.”

Dayton said accepting the offer, with conditions, would bridge a $1.4 billion gap between him and the Republican leadership without any more drastic cuts to to essential services.

"If this gets resolved and gets Minnesota back to work in the next few days, then it doesn't matter what people say about me,” Dayton said.
It would appear that the citizens of the Gopher State are the beneficiaries of Republican legislators who have stood their ground. One would hope that John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, Barack Obama, and Harry Reid are taking note.
:icon_lol:
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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Jan 12, 2010
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#18
Last night, I noted that the State of Minnesota, where the government is shut down but spokesman for the Department of Public Safety Doug Neville is somehow still working...
I like this sentence.
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
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Aug 26, 2002
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#19
Yeah, Shit beer...Drink Yeungling beer ...America,s Oldest Family owned Brewery (1876) going to tour the Brewery soon,have a family Re-union up that way...
I remember when Yuengling was a cheap shit beer and they were close to bankruptcy.
They only got better when they started making the lager again in the mid 80's.
Used to drive over to Jersey to buy cases of Yuengling for like $3.99 when I was 18.
 

Party Rooster

Unleash The Beast
Apr 27, 2005
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#20
What a backwards fucking state when it comes to alcohol. No hard alcohol or wine (and only 3.2 beer) in grocery stores? And you can't even buy a bottle of wine or booze on a Sunday? Doesn't sound very free-markety to me...
 

MayrMeninoCrash

Liberal Psycopath
Dec 9, 2004
24,436
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Silverdale, WA
#22
What a backwards fucking state when it comes to alcohol. No hard alcohol or wine (and only 3.2 beer) in grocery stores? And you can't even buy a bottle of wine or booze on a Sunday? Doesn't sound very free-markety to me...
We absolutely live in the best State for liquor laws. Where else can you stock up on vodka and whiskey at your local 7-11?
 

Ballbuster1

In The Danger Zone...
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Aug 26, 2002
103,106
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#25
We absolutely live in the best State for liquor laws. Where else can you stock up on vodka and whiskey at your local 7-11?
Yeah. I always like that when we travel there.

In PA you have to go to a state store for liquor or wine.
A bar, package store or deli for 6 packs and they can only
sell you 2 at a time.
And a beer distributor if you want cases or kegs. They
can't sell less than a case.