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Government Shutdown Stalls Local Brewery Expansion

A local brewery's plan to expand into the moonshine business is at a standstill thanks to the government shutdown.
Springdale, AR - A local brewery's plan to expand into the moonshine business is at a standstill thanks to the government shutdown.

Core Brewing & Distilling company's still is sitting empty, but it isn't just liquor. The Springdale company can't get the go-ahead on any new products without approval from the Treasury Department.

CEO Jesse Core just brewed up more than 800 gallons of a brand new beer, but he can't bottle a bit of it without permission from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

"We just finished up our Belgian Dark Strong," Core says. "The TTB is the governing body for us brewers, and their shutdown is keeping us from releasing any new products into the market."

Core can still sell the beer in his tasting room, but that won't help the growing company find more fans.

"We wanted to put in our 22 ounce bombers and send it out on the shelves," he says. "I wanted to put this in packaged goods so we could spread the brand a little bit more, let people know we're different styles."

Plans to add moonshine to the lineup are also in limbo, cutting off a new revenue stream that Core was counting on.

"We've been waiting for nine months," he says. "We were 20 days away from being approved and now we're waiting... They're significantly hurting my business. It's making us postpone our business model until they decide to get back to work."

He's ready to see compromise, and wishes his spirits could help make it happen.

"I should just send em a bunch of moonshine to help them get in the right mindset," he says. "I'm sure they feel like they're doing the right thing, but this is the collateral damage that you see."
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