Maine brewers and restaurants can resume serving customers information

6:54 PM, Feb 11, 2014   |    comments
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AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Restaurants, breweries and tap rooms in Maine can now return to the practice of posting the Alcohol By Volume, or ABV, contained in malt beverages on menus and chalkboards.

A couple weeks ago, a handful of establishments were informed that posting the ABV on menus or chalkboards violated state statute against advertising the strength of beer. 

While none of the businesses were cited or fined for the transgression, the enforcement action did cause concern among brewers, bar tenders, servers and restaurant owners.  They worried that by not posting the information they could be liable if their patrons became intoxicated by drinking beers with higher ABVs and not realizing their impairment.

Gerry Reid, head of the Maine Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages and Lottery Operations says they studied federal and state laws to determine if posting the ABV was a violation of the law and determined it was not, as long as the ABV was not used to advertise the potency of a drink.

Reid says he has instructed members of his liquor enforcement team on the policy change and says the rules his officers enforce will be changed to clarify the intent of the advertising law and establish clearer guidelines moving forward.


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