there are two sides to this. first, the production side where pensylvania is hardly the only place where beer production is diversifying (MI has a lot of great breweries as does WA, OR, CA, ME, NY, WI and places like MD, VA, NC, MA, OH, IN, IL, etc are following suit). . the second is retail. there are two levels of distribution, most distributors have to buy from other distributors who purchas a monopoly on sales of a particular kind of beer. It's also my understanding that bars aren't allowed to simply shop around either (scoats?) and have to go with a state approved supplier (even though technically they should all be state approved). I' also point out that craft brewers very much want six pack sales because people are less inclined to try new beer a case at a time (though distributors have begun weekly tastings to try to get around this)...the big boys want 18 packs approved. you may well be right that product placement is a bi factor and certainly that could still be regulated. OTOH, driving up to ME a few years back I was able to buy a tasty six pack of geary's at a gas station. it also brings up the point, some areas ofthe state may be more concerned with buying beer at a supermarket or sheetz/wawa than having a decent wine store (though I'm sure the state fo the wine scene in PA isn't unrelated to the relativley better position beer enjoys). the PLCB also restricts growth in the state's wineries. I'd argue that things like licenses benefit the wealthy (as they are supposed to). It makes alcohol more expensive with the intent of allowing the "poor" to drink less, though if demand is inelastic, it just takes more of their money. worse, it restricts ownership of them to either wealthy or forces people to take out much larger loans from the banks, making it harder for workers (aka bartenders) to simply go into business themselves. It's also my understanding the process of getting a license is so painful that it makes people wonder whether bureaucracy isn't a Penn word and not french.
Originally Posted by MarketStEl
"It has shown me that everything is illuminated in the light of the past"
Jonathan Safran Foer