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The Effects of I-1183: Big Liquor Retailers Move to Washington

Large liquor retailers are looking to move into Washington state, now that I-1183 has taken the state out of the liquor business. These businesses - like Total Wine & More, and Liquor depot - are trying to get a foothold early, so they'll be posed to start selling June 1, when I-1183 takes effect. Retailers are worried about the effect of these large liquor giants; stating they fear for their sales. The increase in stores that sell alcohol could mean an increase in the need for certified alcohol servers.

In addition, retailers are worried about prices. Washington state liquor buyers may see the price of liquor climb, due to new fees mandated by the new law. There will be a 10% distributor fee imposed on alcohol sellers. The biggest worry, though is the 17% fee for retailers. Washington already has higher taxes on liquor sales to consumers than it does to restaurants who serve. The fees are meant to help conpensate the state for losing the profits they would otherwise see at state-owned liquor stores. These larger liquor chains may be able to offset the price increase where smaller sellers cannot.

The prospect of higher prices has distillers and distributors worried about making a profit while not driving away customers under the new system. Extra taxes could cause clients to trade down to less expensive liquors. The drop in demand would be disastrous for the state's fledgling distilleries. However, specialty wine and beer shops are hoping for the best, since they are able to offer more boutique wines, and help customers choose the right selection.

Mandatory Alcohol Server Training (MAST) is required by law for managers, bartenders and other employees who serve or sell alcohol. If you need your servers permit, check out our online alcohol server training, and get your alcohol servers permit from the comfort of your own home. Find out more at

Tags: alcohol online, responsible alcohol service, alcohol news, alcohol sales, Alcohol certified training

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