Government shutdown threatens business for breweries

The partial government shutdown continues to affect lives of Americans all over. It’s been a problem for businesses, including local breweries. These beer makers rely on federal workers to approve their newest brews, but they are stuck in limbo while the shutdown continues.

Big Storm Brewing Co. in Cape Coral has been set back while federal employees can’t approves beers at their business.

“We were hoping to have the whole roll out done before March first,” Co-Owner L.J. Govoni said. “But because the shutdown is delaying our abilities to have our seasonal cans approved … we may or may not miss part of the season we were trying to get beer out.”

Without the approvals the brewery needs from government employees, they can’t move forward with new products and ingredients.

Things that might seem as simple as dumping a barrel of beer that the brewery doesn’t want to sell requires approval.

“We’re growing rapidly right?” Govoni said. “So the unintended consequence at Big Storm can be as simple as beers that we have available in Florida that we want to sell in Texas where we also have distribution, that our distributor wants in Texas, but we can’t do that right now.”

Until the shutdown ends, many barrels could sit in inventory. Beer enthusiast Karl Derr is not usually bothered by government shutdowns, but beer is enough to convince him.

“Normally I’m very happy when the government is shut down because I think they screw up most areas of my life, but under the circumstances here they should probably get their act together,” Derr said.

Reporter:Morgan Rynor
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