Multiple measures introduced to support struggling hospitality businesses
The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) today applauded Texas State Representative Charlie Geren and State Senator Kelly Hancock for introducing legislation (HB 1024, SB 298) to make cocktails to-go permanent – a move that will help support hospitality businesses devastated by COVID-19.
“The path to economic recovery will last long beyond the end of the pandemic for Texas’ hospitality businesses, and cocktails to-go has already proven to be a critical part of their survival over the last several months,” said Kristi Brown, DISCUS Senior Director of State Government Relations. “Making consumer-friendly measures like cocktails to-go permanent provide local bars and restaurants with a sustained source of much-needed revenue as they get back on their feet. We applaud Representative Geren and Senator Hancock for taking action to support hospitality businesses and look forward to seeing their bills move through the legislature.”
Restaurants and bars in Texas have been able to sell cocktails to-go since June 2020 under an executive order issued by Governor Greg Abbot. Both Representative Geren’s and Senator Hancock’s bills require cocktails to-go to be sold in a sealed, tamper-proof container and with the accompaniment of food.
Currently, more than 30 states plus the District of Columbia are allowing restaurants and/or bars to sell cocktails to-go, bottled spirits to-go or both. Iowa and Ohio have both made the measure permanent, and other states, including Arizona, Missouri, Florida, Tennessee and the District of Columbia, are considering doing the same.
The distilled spirits industry is committed to responsibility and encourages moderation for adults who choose to drink alcohol. Cocktails to-go are intended for home consumption. Laws governing alcohol consumption must always be observed.