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PORTLAND, Ore. - Diageo is petitioning the Oregon Court of Appeals to overturn a ban on malternatives in supermarkets and convenience stores, according to published sources.
Oregon's Liquor Commission voted to ban the malt-flavoured beverages from retailers' shelves starting Jan. 1, 2005.
Diageo is the maker of Smirnoff Ice, the state's best-selling malternative. The company maintains that the liquor commission didn't follow proper procedure when it instituted the ban, because it didn't permit any public comment.
The ban would result in the beverages being sold in liquor stores, where they would be taxed at a higher rate and be less accessible to potential buyers.
Oregon law says that malternatives contain too much liquor to be sold in supermarkets.