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ST. PAUL, Minn. - A pair of state lawmakers Thursday introduced a bill that would allow consumers to buy wine at full-line grocery stores in Minnesota.
Sen. Linda Scheid (D-Brooklyn Park) and Rep. Phyllis Kahn (D-Minneapolis)
introduced the Wine With Dinner bill that they say will give Minnesotans "the convenience, choice and lower prices that consumers in other states have enjoyed for years at the Capitol today."
"Consumers don't understand why they can buy a bottle of wine with their other dinner items at supermarkets in 33 states, including Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota, yet they can't do it here," said Scheid, lead author of the bill in the Minnesota Senate.
The Wine With Dinner bill would allow only grocery stores with at least 8,000 square feet of retail space to sell wine. In addition to following all of the current laws that regulate wine sales in liquor stores, Minnesota grocers have agreed to enforce a 10-Point Code of Conduct that outlines some of the strictest wine selling regulations in the country.
"Grocers live, pay taxes in and contribute to local communities, and we're often the largest employers in the communities we serve," said Jamie Pfuhl, executive director of the Minnesota Grocers Association. "We're not about to put our youth and public safety at risk. Under our watch, wine will be sold responsibly and safely."
Convenience and cost are two reasons consumer support for Wine With Dinner is strong. An independent, scientific study conducted by Decision Resources, Ltd. of Minneapolis in November 2006 showed that Minnesotans support Wine With Dinner by a margin of 68 percent to 31 percent.
For more information about Wine With Dinner, go to http://www.WineWithDinner.com