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Russian River to start filling Generic Growlers

Discussion in 'US - Pacific' started by jamex, Mar 22, 2013.

  1. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    I've gotten different color screens on PP growlers. Alpine just charges more because they can.

    I'm looking forward to a more consumer-friendly growler policy where people will fill anything. Doesn't Oregon have something similar? They haven't collapsed into chaos.
  2. I think Alpine's growlers were cheaper when I bought mine. If I recall correctly, they were something like $5 or $7.
  3. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) California Jan 27, 2012

    Fresh food to go doesn't have to be labeled. Why does beer?
  4. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) California Jan 27, 2012

    Must have been more than 3 years ago.
  5. mrkrispy

    mrkrispy Savant (410) California Apr 5, 2006

    You should know well by now that alcohol is not regulated the same as food, and isn't regarded as food legally. Be thankful for that, because hoop-jumping for brewery "food ingredients" would be far more costly for a small brewery than the hoop-jumping for a license and TTB bs.
  6. How much does the growler cost?
  7. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) California Jan 27, 2012

    If candy is regulated as food, so should be beer.
  8. evilc

    evilc Initiate (0) California Jan 27, 2012

    Has to be less than $3 unless places like BP and Oggis are selling them at a loss.
  9. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) California Dec 10, 2011

    I didn't know the California Craft Brewer's Association was a brewery. Moron. As I said from the beginning, it would take a little time (it's been, what, 2 months?) for things to start to iron themselves out. Looks like RR worked with the Association to come up with a solution with the state. You reporting breweries to the ABC accomplished nothing. And when are you going to release the list of places you ratted on? I highly doubt anything has changed and the 'smart' people are just jerks.

    Good for you.
  10. (a) that's entirely possible

    (b) how does that compare to the profit margins on the beer contained within a growler?
  11. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    Where did I say they were?

    *picture of baby crying*

    AleSmith and RR (who were receptive to the idea) changing policies doesn't prove anything about breweries who were unreceptive to the idea. Follow along bro, I'll put you on the choo-choo train to knowledge.
  12. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) California Dec 10, 2011

    How will we know if your actions are working if you don't tell us which breweries were not cooperating with your demands if you don't tell us who they are?

    Be proud of all your good work! Let us know!
  13. Patrick

    Patrick Initiate (0) Massachusetts Aug 13, 2007

    Did you ever say you reported breweries or is everyone just assuming that?
  14. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    You'll just have to imagine it. I'm not sure what will make you angrier, releasing a list or not releasing it. I'm gambling on the latter.

    I e-mailed a few breweries after the clarification and pointed it out to them. They said, "No, we have no plans to do this at this time because we believe the law only lets us fill our own glass." Out of those breweries that did not label ABV > 5.7%, I reported them to the ABC; they're not following the law in the first place and are using it as a shield.

    Let them talk to the ABC and learn what the law actually says. In the process of complying with the law (by submitting a label for approval) they may actually realize how easy it is to design a universal label a la Russian River.

    This pissed off a lot of people who purportedly wanted change but wanted to "stay the course" with a "wait and see" approach like they've had for 10-15 years.
  15. jtmartino

    jtmartino Savant (470) California Dec 11, 2010

    Another relevant figure is repeat customers vs. one-time-only growler purchases. For repeat customers, the margins on glassware are irrelevant. For one-time-buyers the glassware profit is more significant as it comprises a greater proportion of overall profit on the sale.

    Either way, I would assume that beer is more profitable than glassware over the long haul. Which is why more breweries should adopt a universal growler policy to sell more beer. Seems straightforward.
    MikeTen likes this.
  16. I would also assume that most brewers are aware of this and think of it that way which is why all the hand-wringing and freaking out over the fact that brewers aren't already filling all growlers is overblown. There's tons of financial incentive to encourage them, in addition to tons of positive PR to be had.

    People who think that they can provide additional incentive STRONGER than this (i.e.: financial/monetary incentive) are entirely delusional.
    jtmartino likes this.
  17. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    No one has adequately explained how the financial/monetary incentive JUST began, or why there was resistance when Rue was pursuing a universal growler. Hint: some/many breweries don't actually want it.
    jtmartino likes this.
  18. jtmartino

    jtmartino Savant (470) California Dec 11, 2010

    I totally agree - it seems straightforward and I would assume breweries want it. It's just funny to hear that a lot of smaller breweries still aren't clear about the law, still don't know how to address the clarification, and still need to check with their respective brewers guilds before doing anything about it.

    I will never understand why brewers didn't push for a clarification sooner, since I was able to receive a same-day response when I asked the ABC. I'm just glad they're finally doing something about it.
  19. Don't forget to factor in the loss of revenue from those that would have gotten a fill, but didn't want to buy a growler for a single use.
  20. jtmartino

    jtmartino Savant (470) California Dec 11, 2010

    That is a great point, and describes me perfectly. I already have a "problem" with collecting glassware - I didn't want it to spread to growlers too, so I usually avoid buying them.
  21. JustXBeer

    JustXBeer Savant (265) California Nov 29, 2012

    mmmm....use Ballast Point's 1 gal Growler at RR :)
  22. stupac2

    stupac2 Initiate (0) California Feb 22, 2011

    Braulers. I think I'm going to order one now.
    JustXBeer likes this.
  23. RedBeeron

    RedBeeron Savant (250) California Jul 7, 2012

    Definitely possible, though they may also receive larger bulk order discounts that lowers their cost. Both locations mentioned are significantly larger than alpine, and likely move more product.

    Though wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if alpine charged more just because they could.
  24. JustXBeer

    JustXBeer Savant (265) California Nov 29, 2012

    Been wanting one...just a Blank One
  25. While it seems inexplicable, it makes much more sense if you think of it like a bunch of small brewers who already went through red tape hell just to get open and believe that they are clear on the law and that fighting it is an insurmountable, or at least draining and practically insurmountable. I don't say that to defend them, necessarily, it's a bit crazy that this potential solution was being thrown around for a long time and nobody actually thought to push for an answer / feedback SOONER, but... it has finally happened, and the ball is rolling downhill.
  26. MacNCheese

    MacNCheese Initiate (0) California Dec 10, 2011

    A lot of the smaller breweries are busy brewing and running a business and will let other's go first and work through the kinks of the new interpretation. Once the road is paved, they'll jump on board. I really laugh when people think government is streamlined and ready to authorize everything licketlysplit.
  27. I thought Patrick Rue attempted to gain support for a universal growler solution which was met with ambivalence.
    MikeTen likes this.
  28. Was this the terrible universal growler solution that had every brewer's name and address in tiny print on it or something else?

    Details?
  29. I'm not really sure on the details just that he was trying to push for something. It tells me that at least one brewery wasn't satisfied with the status quo and made an attempt at change. I'd assume he sought clarification beforehand from the ABC seeing as how he has a law background and all.
  30. His "law background" didn't exactly help him out when the CA growler law was posted to the old forums and several users, including myself, pointed out to him that the law did not prohibit brewers from using stickers to mark growlers.
    jtmartino likes this.
  31. rgco

    rgco Aficionado (180) California Apr 2, 2012

    I personally want to thank MikeTen for spearheading this growler movement and bringing about monumental change. Sí, esto puede douche!
    MacNCheese likes this.
  32. That last statement is just... not very accurate or clear. A "sticker" is just a label. Presumably everyone knows the law doesn't require screen printed growlers. Tags are frequently used, etc.

    The sticky issue seems to have been whether generic growlers or OTHER breweries' growlers can be used simply by obscuring their labeling and placing on your own label. And how thoroughly do they need to be obscured? Etc.
  33. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    You're welcome. Way too many people were being lazy brewery apologists.

    "Yes, this can douche"?

    By the way, still literally zero coherent responses to this, but a lot of name-calling in its stead:

    You may not like what I did, but you have to admit, from the lack of an argument to the contrary, that I was doing the right thing.
  34. Is RR one of the breweries that MikeTen contacted?
  35. MikeTen

    MikeTen Initiate (0) California Apr 3, 2009

    No. I contacted AleSmith and they said they were working on it, and they did... So I didn't bother reporting them.

    I only pushed breweries that were being difficult.
  36. Alpine just recently started writing the ABV on their growler lids, at least on Nelson. Coincidence? Hmm...
  37. I asked about filling 750ml and 1L growlers today at RR, and was told 2L swing top growlers only. Here's hoping that they let us bring in 750ml swing top growlers.
  38. The Stone Company Store in Oceanside has a $108 glass 64 oz. growler. It gives you some discount every time you use it but it would take a lot of fills to break even.
  39. stupac2

    stupac2 Initiate (0) California Feb 22, 2011

    I sort of doubt that the bar employees are fully briefed on what's going to be happening yet. The label clearly has a blank space to write down volume, so I really doubt that they're not expecting to fill non-2L growlers. And limiting it to 2L swing-tops makes the entire endeavor pointless since so few places use them you may as well just buy RR's glass. I think he's stating current policy until renewal.

    Incidentally, the first time I'm there after they implement this I'm going to ask how much it would cost to fill that 12L temptation bottle they keep behind the bar.
    bkrueger likes this.

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