Regulations relax for craft breweries, distilleries under Schweyer bill

HARRISBURG, April 16 – Craft distilleries and breweries would have consistent and expanded operating hours for sales at their tasting and tap rooms under legislation that passed the state House of Representatives unanimously today, according to the bill’s primer sponsor Rep. Peter Schweyer.

“Recent changes to the state liquor code in 2016 created the opportunity for breweries and distilleries to serve for on-premises consumption. This helped develop a rapidly expanding craft and artisan alcohol industry in Pennsylvania. But the inconsistent hours of operation that currently exists creates confusion and inconvenience for consumers and fewer working hours for employees,” said Schweyer, D-Lehigh.

“My legislation addresses these inconsistencies by expanding hours and creating consistency for both the craft liquor and beer manufacturers, thus providing better job opportunities for those who work at these thriving craft industries.”

Schweyer, who said there are seven manufacturers of beer, spirits and wine in Allentown, believes this legislation will help this still-developing industry.

Specifically, breweries and distilleries would be permitted to sell these Pennsylvania crafts products between the hours of 9 a.m. and midnight Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. until 11 p.m. with a Sunday sales permit.

Under current law, brewery hours are 10 a.m. to midnight Monday through Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. with a Sunday sales permit. Distilleries may operate every day from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.

House Bill 947 heads to the state Senate for consideration.