Today, the Texas Legislature passed HB 1024 which would make cocktails to-go permanent supporting hospitality businesses devastated by COVID-19 and providing increased convenience to consumers. This bill now heads to Governor Greg Abbott for his signature.
“Bars and restaurants in Texas have leaned on cocktails to-go throughout the pandemic as a lifeline to keep their doors open and generate revenue,” said Kristi Brown, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States Senior Director of State Government Relations. “Now, the legislature has taken action to make this critical measure permanent and provide long-term support for Texas businesses. We thank Governor Abbott for being a vocal supporter of cocktails to-go and encourage him to sign this bill as soon as possible and make the business- and consumer-friendly measure permanent in Texas.”
Restaurants and bars in Texas have been able to sell cocktails to-go since June 2020 under an executive order issued by Governor Greg Abbott. HB 1024 requires cocktails to-go to be sold in a sealed, tamper-proof container with the accompaniment of food.
More than 30 states began allowing restaurants and/or bars to sell cocktails to-go as a COVID economic relief measure. Iowa, Ohio, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Montana, Arkansas and the District of Columbia have all made COVID-era cocktails to-go measures permanent. Dozens of other states are also considering legislation to extend or make permanent cocktails to-go measures.
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.