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slides: Rhode Island Ranks Poorly For Wine Drinkers

Saturday, August 24, 2013

 

Love to drink wine? Rhode Island doesn't love the wine trade as much as you do.

While Rhode Island wine drinkers may love their local vineyards and wine shops, it turns out that Rhode Island is one of the worst-ranked states in the country for wine lovers, according to a new report from The American Wine Consumer Coalition in Washington, DC.

The report, called "Consuming Concerns", both grades and ranks each state based on how friendly its wine laws are for consumers. Rhode Island pulled a failing grade--an 'F'--and ranked #44 overall, tied with neighboring Massachusetts.

In summary, "Rhode Island law severely limits consumer access to wine," according to the report. "Rhode Islanders may not purchase in grocery stores, nor may they have wine shipped directly to them from wineries or wine retailers. The result is severely limited access to a diversity of wines and significant inconvenience." The only area in which Rhode Island gained some points was in the Coalition's assessment of government control, where there's none. 

Grading wine friendliness

To rank each state, the Coalition assigned certain set of points for each way it met consumer needs on six issues:  

1. Winery Shipping 
2. No State Monopoly on Wine Sales
3. Retailer Shipping
4. Sunday Wine Sales
5. Bringing Wine Into Restaurants
6. Wine Sales in Grocery Stores 

If a state did not meet consumer expectations on any of these six issues, it received no ranking points for that issue. On the issue of bringing wine into restaurants, states might receive partial point allocation when the conduct was allowed but only under specific, restrictive conditions. Points up to 100 maximum were then translated into a letter grade based on a typical grading scale. 

Least + most friendly wine states

Along with Rhode Island and Massachusetts, the Top 10 Least Friendly States for Wine Lovers are Indiana, South Dakota, Delaware, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Utah.  On the friendlier end of the spectrum, the Top 10 are, in descending order: California, District of Columbia, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Oregon, Virginia, Louisiana, Nevada, Alaska-Tie for 10th, and Wyoming-Tie for 10th.

For more details on Rhode Island's wine laws as well as those of the other 6 New England states, see the slides, below.

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Rhode Island

Grade: F

Rank: 44

Rhode Island law severely limits consumer access to wine.

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: PARTIAL

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: PROHIBITED

Prev Next

Massachusetts

Grade: F

Rank: 44

Massachusetts wine consumers are burdened by onerous laws that deprive the state’s wine lovers of choice and convenience when it comes to buying wine.

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: PARTIAL

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: PROHIBITED

Prev Next

Connecticut

Grade: D+

Rank: 30

Connecticut ranks quite low on the wine consumer friendliness scale primarily because its laws significantly happer consumer access to wine.

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: ALLOWED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: ALLOWED

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: PROHIBITED

Prev Next

Maine

Grade: C

Rank: 25

Maine falls into the middle of the pack where wine consumer friendliness is concerned, particularly due to its prohibition on retailer to consumer wine shipping.

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: ALLOWED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: PARTIAL

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: ALLOWED

Prev Next

Vermont

Grade: C

Rank: 25

Vermont’s laws concerning retailer to consumer wine shipping and BYOB place it in the middle of the wine consumer friendliness rankings. 

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: ALLOWED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: PROHIBITED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: PARTIAL

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: ALLOWED

Prev Next

New Hampshire

Grade: A+

Rank: 1

No state treats wine consumers better than New Hampshire given its laws that provide outstanding access to wine and its laws that provide wine lovers with great convenience.

Winery-To-Consumer Shipping: ALLOWED

Retailer-To-Consumer Shipping: ALLOWED

Government Control of Wine Sales: NO

Sunday Sales of Wine: ALLOWED

BYO/Corkage in Restaurants: ALLOWED

Wine Sold in Grocery Stores: ALLOWED

 
 

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