Old Colorado Prohibition law changed so you can buy full-strength beer at the store

by Amanda Push

The year 2019 is kicking off by finally allowing you to purchase full-strength beer at convenience and grocery stores in Colorado. In what could be considered the state’s New Year’s resolution, starting Jan. 1, Colorado’s 3.2 beer law – outdated legislation originating from the Prohibition era – was changed so that convenience and grocery stores armed with beer licenses can now sell full-strength beer. Cheers!

The old law prohibited supermarkets and convenient stores from selling beer with more than 3.2 percent alcohol by volume.

“That was a very sweeping change, probably the biggest since Prohibition, in how liquor’s sold in Colorado,” Patrick Maroney, the director of Colorado’s Liquor Enforcement Division, told the Denver Post.

Some, however, are concerned as to how the changes will affect smaller businesses. Liquor stores and brewers share concerns that the ability for larger stores to sell full-strength alcohol will push them out of business if they’re not able to compete with the prices offered by bigger chains.

“It’s the beginning of the end,” Sherry Wertz, owner of Liquor World, told the Durango Herald. “It makes me sad. I don’t want to see anyone go out of business, but it’s inevitable. It’s going to happen.”

Despite concerns though, the changes are now in full effect. Here’s a break down of what beer guzzlers will now start seeing as a result:

Supermarkets and convenient stores across the state are now able to sell full-strength beer as long as they have a beer license. Some supermarkets will be allowed to sell liquor and wine as well.

Just like liquor stores, grocery, and convenience stores can now start delivering beer.

State parks will now allow for all types of alcoholic beverages to be brought in. Previously, state law only allowed for 3.2 beer.

Amanda Push


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