A group of business, winery and farm groups are asking Gov. Andrew Cuomo to re-evaluate his stance on legalizing the sale of wine in grocery stores, saying it could “bring the New York wine industry to life.”
Cuomo spoke out against the idea earlier this year, saying he does not believe the “benefit outweigh the costs.” Proponents say it could create an economic boom for New York wineries and grape growers, while opponents say it would destroy mom-and-pop liquor stores that rely on wine sales to stay afloat.
“New York Farm Bureau has long supported the sale of wine in grocery stores because of the enormous opportunities that it would provide to New York’s wineries and grape growers,” Dean Norton, president of New York Farm Bureau, said in a statement. “Studies have shown that making this common sense modification in state law would create more than 6,000 jobs in wineries and related industries and produce more than $70 million in new sales tax revenue.
“It’s long past time that we remove this barrier to consumer choice and job creation and become the thirty-sixth state to make this important change.”
In a joint news release, the groups—including the New York Wine Industry Association and the state Business Council—play to Cuomo’s love of state history, comparing the wine in grocery stores bill to a 1974 bill signed by then-Gov. Hugh Carey. That bill revamped the state’s permitting system for wineries.
“Governor Andrew M. Cuomo should take the next step to continue this growth and allow thousands of grape growers and small businesses in rural towns to create jobs, by supporting the Wine Industry and Liquor Store Revitalization Act currently in the New York State legislature,” Don Tones, president of the New York State Wine Grape Growers Association, said in a statement.