ALBANY, NY - Supporters of letting New York supermarkets sell wine are hoping to convince lawmakers that their proposal creates new jobs and revenue streams for the state, the Buffalo News reports. But Gov. Andrew Cuomo has not included such a measure in his proposed budget.
According to a recent study from the New Yorkers for Economic Growth and Open Markets, wine sales in grocery stores would generate annual revenues of $71 million within five years from license fees and current excise taxes. New York would gather around $347 million via franchise fees (a one-time revenue). The study also projected more than 6,000 net new jobs within the first year due to more employees in wineries, stores and ancillary businesses.
"The idea has been out there and it€™s really starting to gain, I think, some traction in the consumer€™s mind," said James T. Rogers, president of the Food Industry Alliance.
This issues has come up a number of times over the years but has yet to be approved by the legislature. Liquor stores have vehemently opposed the change, predicting the elimination of liquor store jobs and sales.
"We€™re feeling like this idea is dead," said Marc J. Ressler, vice president of the New York State Liquor Store Association. Ressler also owns a liquor store. He predicts about a 1,000 of New York€™s approximately 2,700 liquor stores would go out of business if grocery stores start selling wine.
Thirty-five states allow grocery stores to sell wine. New York, which ranks fourth in wine production, is the only state within the Top 10 not allowing wine sales in supermarkets.