WSWA Applauds the Withdrawal of Oregon Private Label Ballot Initiative

May 18, 2022
Washington, D.C.

WASHINGTON, D.C., 05/18/2022 – Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America (WSWA) today announced its support for the withdrawal of Oregon Initiative Petition 35 (IP 35) by the Northwest Grocery Association which faced opposition from a strong coalition of local industry partners including the Oregon Beer & Wine Distributors (OBWD).


“Oregon Beer & Wine Distributors have secured a third victory on this topic since 2014,” said OBWD Executive Director Danelle Romain. “We are thrilled about our efforts to preserve Oregon’s fair alcohol marketplace that provides equal access and opportunity to the grocery store shelf, while balancing public health and safety. We formed an unprecedented coalition of distributors, suppliers, restaurants, small retailers, union leaders, and public health advocates who united against the grocers’ overreach.  While IP 35 won’t be on Oregon’s 2022 ballot, the discussion about the distribution and sale of liquor will continue in Oregon.”


If the measure had made it to the ballot and passed, IP 35 would have dismantled a strongly regulated marketplace and undermined the three-tier system by allowing distilleries to self-distribute to new off-premises distilled liquor retail licensees, removing wholesalers from important tax collection responsibilities, and by eliminating other important regulatory provisions that could lead to a market dominated by chain retailers.


OBWD was part of a larger coalition of opposition that released a statement late yesterday evening:


“This is now the third time that large, out-of-state retailers have failed to move forward with their unpopular, unnecessary and misguided proposal to dismantle the system of liquor sales that works,” said Hannah Love, a spokeswoman for Keep It Local. “Oregonians can clearly see through their scheme. The retailers realized after a month and more than a hundred thousand dollars spent toward attempting to gather signatures that it was best to avoid an expensive, contentious and ultimately unsuccessful campaign.”


About Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America

WSWA is the national trade association representing the distribution tier of the wine and spirits industry, dedicated to advancing the interests and independence of distributors and brokers of wine and spirits. Founded in 1943, WSWA has more than 380 member companies in 50 states and the District of Columbia, and its members distribute more than 80 percent of all wine and spirits sold at wholesale in the United States. 


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