Updated Fri, Oct 11, 2013 10:21 am
The federal government shutdown could result in an approximately $10,000 loss for local brewery Jackie O’s, says brew master Brad Clark.
The Athens’ company has two batches of craft beer waiting for certificates of label approval (COLA) from the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB).
“What has happened is we have beers now that we have packaged but we cannot sell them because the labels are within the government system but they are kind of hanging in limbo right now,” Clark said.
Clark says timing is especially crucial for the 80 kegs of Jackie O’s Barking Pumpkin Ale.
“We didn't expect this to last as long as it has and at this point who knows when it is going to come back online,” Clark said. “If it is a month from now it is going to be really silly when everyone has their Christmas ale out and we have our pumpkin ale out.”
In a twist of irony, the agency continues to collect bi-weekly taxes on Jackie O’s production adding to Clark’s frustration over the shutdown.
“Of course those offices are still up and running, but the ones that allow us to make new product and get new product such as seasonals into the marketplace, those are of course shut down,” Clark said.
In addition to Ohio craft breweries in Illinois, Maryland, Colorado, Florida, and Wisconsin are facing a host issues because the closure of obscure agency tasked with regulating the fast-growing industry. It all adds up to anger and frustration for brew masters like Clark.
“It just kind of makes you angry because they [TTB] already make it extremely difficult and extremely slow and then to just stop it really kind of screws things up,” Clark said.