Beer distributors are leaders in their communities and care deeply about promoting the responsible and legal consumption of malt beverage products. Working with their brewer and retailer partners, the 92,000 American men and women of the beer distribution industry play a critical role in the effort to eliminate drunk driving, alcohol abuse and the underage purchase and consumption of alcohol.
Alcohol is not like other consumer goods and can have consequences if abused by adults or consumed illegally by those underage. That is why beer distributors take steps to ensure the safe and legal sale of malt beverage products and fight efforts to weaken regulations that exist to provide a safe and orderly marketplace.
Beer distributors are licensed at both the state and federal level. They operate within a system controlled by the states which is responsible for regulating alcohol beverage distribution and administering prevention and treatment activities in communities. This state-based system of alcohol regulation provides a transparent and accountable chain of custody in the sale of beer, making it easier to enforce state laws and local ordinances. The system also regulates retail sales, ensuring that retailers hold the appropriate licenses and do not sell to those under the legal drinking age.
Within the regulatory framework, beer distributors provide not only choice and value in their products but also participate in a wide variety of programs that promote responsible consumption. Programs range from providing free taxi rides home for bar or restaurant patrons to sponsoring alcohol-free after-prom events and producing educational materials to help parents talk to their children about underage drinking. Distributors also promote alcohol education initiatives, such as inviting guest speakers to schools and community centers to share their personal experiences involving alcohol. America's Beer Distributors: Promoting Responsibility in Our Communities highlights the numerous programs beer distributors provide to promote alcohol safety and education across the nation. Just as alcohol regulations vary from state to state, so do distributor-sponsored responsibility programs. All of the programs, however, share a common goal: to promote safety in the communities where our families live, work and play.
*Article reproduced with permission from the NBWA, The National Beer Wholesalers Association.