Why Can’t You Get Wine & Liquor At Grocery Stores In New York?
With a massive snowstorm barreling down on New York and people trying to stock up on all sorts of supplies to ride out the storm, there are a few items that may be necessary that you won't find in grocery stores.
Local grocery stores like Wegmans, Tops, Dashs, Market in the Square, and more do a great job at stocking all sorts of essential items and supplies, including local favorites in their locations. National chains like Walmart, Target, and Whole Foods also offer a wide variety of items to get for your kitchen and house in general.
However, there are a couple of things that you'll never find in New York grocery stores, no matter how much it makes sense, and that's wine and liquor.
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Think about how much easier our storm preparation would be if we could grab a nice bottle of bourbon or wine while getting eggs and milk
According to the New York Alcoholic Beverage Control Law, the State Liquor Authority highly regulates the sale of wine and liquor in the Empire State, and state law allows beer to be available at grocery stores and drug stores during certain hours, and on certain days.
However, wine and liquor are not allowed to be sold by grocery stores. The state requires there to be specific Wine Stores and Liquor Stores in which no other products can be sold.
The New York State Liquor Authority ("SLA" or "Authority") and its agency arm, the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC), were established under New York State Law in 1934 to: "regulate and control the manufacture and distribution within the state of alcoholic beverages for the purpose of fostering and promoting temperance in their consumption and respect for and obedience to law"
-New York State Liquor Authority
It has never made sense that liquor and beer are not available at grocery stores. There is a bill in the New York State Legislature right now that would allow grocery and drug stores to sell more than just beer. Unfortunately, this bill doesn't look like it will pass, it's been introduced every year for debate since 2009 and it has not moved past committee.
Maybe one day in the future our storm prep will get a little easier.