Virginia wine wars
A bill, sponsored by Del. Christopher B. Saxman, R-Staunton, would allow small Virginia farm wineries and those in other states to distribute their products in Virginia without going through a licensed wholesale distributor.There is a competing bill, however, that's a boon to the distributors:
The measure is intended to fix a state law that was found by a federal judge to violate the U.S. Constitution's Commerce Clause. The challenged law allows Virginia wineries, but not those from out of state, to self-distribute in Virginia.
Losing the ability to wholesale their products directly to restaurants, wine shops and other retailers would put many small Virginia wineries out of business, winery owners say.
The distributors are supporting, instead, legislation by Del. David B. Albo, R-Fairfax, that would create a new separate class of small wine distributors selling 30,000 gallons or less of wine per year. Duvall said the bill is not intended to be a "wink-and-nod" way for wineries to distribute their products.The second bill would allow wineries to set up "dummy distributorships", where they hold a fractional interest, or they could get a friend or relative to obtain a distributor's license. Either would place an undue burden on small wineries that they can ill afford to deal with.
Is it just me or do the wine distributors remind you of the character from Office Space whose only purpose at the company was to deliver the customers' requirements to the engnieers, when the engineers were perfectly capable of talking to the customers directly?