Pennsylvania residents who want the ability to have wine from an out-of-state winery shipped directly to their house might be in for some luck. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is reporting the state legislature has introduced a bill that will allow wineries not located within the Keystone State to ship wine directly to the houses of customers older than 21. As a report from WHTM News notes, currently out-of-state wineries must ship buyers' purchases to an official store controlled by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, where the consumer can then pick the purchase up.
Why change the rule for out-of-state wineries?
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette report indicates that a law currently on the books in Pennsylvania stipulates that in-state and out-of-state wineries must be treated equally. The new legislation would bring both domestic and imported wines on equal footing in the state. Of course, as WHTM reports the bill still has to pass the full state House and Senate before becoming law, and with state budget negotiations picking up steam the bill could sit idle until the fall.
Aren't wine shipments to consumers part of a total liquor privatization package?
The fate of the total liquor privatization system talked about so often in Harrisburg over the last few years is unclear. A Central Pennsylvania Business Journal report highlights that an auction similar to the one proposed by Pennsylvania lawmakers took place in Washington state; however, the auction earned a little over $30 million and Keystone State administrators were hoping to raise close to nine times that amount.
Can in-state wineries ship to Pennsylvania residents?
According to FineWineandGoodSpirits.com, which is the official retail arm of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, any wine and liquor ordered from the website can be shipped to any Pennsylvania address except P.O. Boxes. Of course, the website also indicates that a third party can only be designated for an in-store pickup, which means buyers should be extra careful of shipping requirements when ordering. However, as of right now only in-state wineries have the ability to ship product directly to consumers, and only if the appropriate license has been obtained from the state.
What are the restrictions to having liquor or wine shipped to the house?
As the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports, someone at the residence over the age of 21 must sign for the shipment when delivery is made. Otherwise, as FineWineandGoodSpirits.com states, the delivery can be returned to the fulfillment center after UPS makes three delivery attempts.
Jason Gallagher is a longtime Pennsylvania resident. He has experiences in trends and developments in many regions from having lived in many parts of the Keystone State, and currently resides in the Pittsburgh area.