Indiana proposes new law for carry-out beer sales

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In Indiana, it's against the law to buy cold beer at a grocery store, but a new proposal could change that.

The beer business is bright at Oaken Barrel.

"We had a record year for three years in a row, double digit increase last three years," said Kwang Casey, Oaken Barrel owner.

Now the Greenwood-based craft brewery is expanding by adding 2,000 square feet, hiring more workers and more than doubling capacity.

The growth is due in part to high demand for the product and a potential change in Indiana liquor law.

"It'll help all the brewers in indiana. definitely an increase in sales. That's another reason why we're expanding," said Casey.

In the upcoming session, lawmakers plan to introduce a new twist on the old Sunday sales debate. It's more about where and what kind of beer you can buy.

The proposal - which would allow Sunday carry-out alcohol sales - also would allow grocery stores and convenience stores to sell cold beer as long as that beer is made in Indiana. Right now, you can only buy cold beer at a liquor store.

Previous attempts to change the law didn't specify Indiana brews.

"We just believe that really highlighting our Indiana products is what we wanted to do and a tool that we could use to bring those products to the forefront in a way that was complimentary to the Sunday sales strategy," said Rep. Cindy Noe (R-Indianapolis).

Liquor store owners say the new strategy will bring the same result: No change in the law.

"It's kind of like a three-year-old fruitcake, keeps getting re-gifted. It's getting stale. Nobody wants it," said Raymond Cox, Elite Beverages president and owner. "We carry Indiana beers. We carry all beers. Really they're best marketed here in a package store and they'd be the first ones to lose if that proposal went through."

But some Indiana brewers say cold beer sales would only help their business grow.

See the proposal.