Wine, beer, spirits and cider summit - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Wine, beer spirits and cider summit

Posted: Updated: April 8, 2014 12:00 PM

ALBANY N.Y. - Two years ago, the governor hosted dozens of beer, wine and spirit producers and farmers who met for the first summit to talk about ways to grow their industry. 

Since then, the state has been helping these businesses with marketing efforts, allowing them to sell and provide samples of their products at special events and also streamline the business.

Governor Cuomo created a one stop shop, making it easier for beer, wine and spirits producers having a single point of government contact for help with licensing and regulations. 

The co-owner of Albany Distilling, a local company, will be in Albany Tuesday. He said that since the first summit, the state has stepped up, eased regulation and cut down on fees which go a long way.

"It's something that for a small producer like myself it eats into our budget. The governor eliminated those fees below a certain production limit, so it's a direct affect for a small business like myself," said Matt Jagger.

The governor has also signed legislation over the past couple years to help these businesses grow. The number of microbreweries has increased. In 2011 the state went from 40 to 93 as of Tuesday.

Governor Cuomo said there still more work that needs to be done to help the industry flourish and not slow it down.

"The liquor industry going back to prohibition. It was a very heavily regulated state and federal activity. And the industry changed dramatically and frankly the laws didn't keep up with the pace the rate of change of the industry. So it's a challenge for government to adjust and change and transition," said Cuomo.

Industry leaders from all over the state joined in on the conversation, giving them a chance to tell the governor what works and what still needs to improve.

"Legislation that would dramatically simplify and streamline the manufacturers licensing process. So that once you get your license, so it covers everything that you need to do," said Jim Trezise of the New York Wine and Grape Foundation

Trezise said businesses have to get special permits to do things like tastings, but they are looking to have one license that covers it all. Industry leaders say this would not only save time and effort on the industry, but the state liquor authority as well.

Other recommendations include connecting neighboring wineries within 50 miles from each other, which could attract more tourism.

Moving forward, the governor said he will be taking these ideas into consideration to help advance the beverage industry. 

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