Missouri distilleries feeling the financial impact of COVID; turning to Congress for help

News

Copper still alembic inside distillery to distill grapes and produce spirits

ST. LOUIS- Missouri distillers have come together and are urging the state’s congressional delegation to help them with economic relief due to COVID-19.

The presidents of the Missouri Craft Distillers Guild and Distilled Spirits Council of the United States asked congressional leaders to work with their colleagues in Washington, D.C. to enact measures that provide liquidity and certainty to distillers who have seen a drop in sales due to the closure of distiller tasting rooms, restaurants, and bars.

The letter also states many distilleries in Missouri have been forced to furlough or lay off employees and some are facing the hard decision of whether to close their doors permanently.

The letter also states that the distilled spirit industry in Missouri had been thriving prior to COVID-19. The industry supported more than 29,000 jobs and brought $2.9 billion in economic activity in 2018.

The leaders suggested the following ways Congress could support recovery of distilleries:

  • Passing the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (S. 362/H.R. 1175), which includes a critical tax cut for craft distillers. Craft distillers in Missouri will face a 400% increase in their federal excise taxes in January 2021 if Congress does not act by year’s end.
  • Supporting the RESTAURANTS Act, which provide grants to eligible establishments for payroll, benefits, mortgage, rent, utilities, and other expenses and is a critical step forward for the recovery of the hospitality industry.  
  • Seeking the suspension of tariffs on distilled spirits. The EU tariffs, which have been in place since June 2018, have had a devasting impact on our American Whiskey exports, including from Missouri distillers, resulting in a 41 percent decline from $757 million (July 2017 to June 2018) to $449 million (August 2019 to July 2020).  The EU may impose new tariffs on other U.S. spirits in the coming weeks if these trade disputes are not resolved soon.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.

Popular

Latest News

More News