Now I truly believe I have heard everything. Thursday (9/20) Alabama Alcohol and Beverage Commission agents staged a “raid” of Hop City Craft Beer and Wine in Birmingham. ABC officials claim it was not a raid, but merely an inspection because the store had been warned to remove their home brewing equipment. They confiscated wort chillers, carboys and home brewing guides.
Does it really matter whether it was a raid or inspection? When it comes to home brewing, a ban on the sale of equipment is just ridiculous, especially at this stage in the game. Home brewing is not even considered illegal by the United States of America anymore, not since 1979. Our President has beer home brewed in the White House!
The only two states still prohibiting the hobby of home brewing are Alabama and Mississippi. Though it is legal to make your own wine in Mississippi. There’s some logic for you.
Attorney for the Alabama ABC board stated, “You can have sugar, you can have malt, you can have hops, you can have tubing, copper and everything else, but if you put it all together in a store and market it like it’s going to be home brewing stuff and have a book about how to do it, it’s a problem.”
According to Alabama Homebrewing there is a bill being filed for the 2013 Legislative Session to legalized home brewing and the sale of equipment. Hopefully the bill will be voted in. There are neo-prohibitionists currently against the idea though, hopefully not enough to make a difference. You can follow current news regarding the legalization of home brewing in Alabama on the Alabama Homebrewing News page.
An attempt to legalize home brewing in Mississippi fell flat a bill fueled by a grass roots movement, Mississippians for Economic & Beverage Advancement, was outvoted. MEBA has restructured as Raise Your Pints Inc and continues to pursue the legalization of home brewing in Mississippi.
In this day and age we need to re-examine archaic laws and make amendments, especially where it impacts citizens and their right to relatively harmless hobbies.