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Push to sell wine at state supermarkets bubbles up again

Connecticut is one of only eight states in America that still does not allow the sale of wine in grocery stores, but supermarkets across the state are making a real push to change that.

Mark Sudol

Jan 12, 2023, 12:56 AM

Updated 527 days ago

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Connecticut is one of only eight states in America that still does not allow the sale of wine in grocery stores, but supermarkets across the state are making a real push to change that.
When you check out at your local grocery store, you can buy beer, but you can't buy wine.
"I think there's a move to modernize laws," said Wayne Pesce, with the Connecticut Food Association.
Pesce and the Connecticut Food Association have asked the general law committee to raise a bill in the state legislature that would allow grocery stores to finally sell wine.
"I think we've come out of the pandemic and consumers are shopping differently. I know that we've done polling that tells us that folks would like to be able to purchase wine where they purchase their food and still have that relationship with their local package store," said Pesce.
Pesce says this is a grass roots movement that didn't exit a year or two ago.
Stores like C-Town Supermarket in South Norwalk are toasting the idea.
Right now, you can only buy wine in a wine store or one of the 1,250 package stores in the state.
The Connecticut Package Stores Association says wine happens to be the most profitable product package stores sell.
"Package stores are small businesses too and if you're not supporting your small business, they're not going to be able to stay in business," said Jean Cronin, with the Connecticut Package Stores Association.
The Package Stores Association says grocery stores can't offer the variety of wine that a package store can.
They say package stores are convenient - usually right near a grocery store.
This debate has come up several times since the 1980s. The legislative session is now open once again and it remains to be seen if this bill becomes a law.


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