Campaign Is Underway At Kroger To Put Wine In Grocery Stores - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Campaign Is Underway At Kroger To Put Wine In Grocery Stores

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by Chris Cannon

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Kroger stores across Tennessee are giving customers a chance to send a message to lawmakers about the issue of selling wine in grocery stores.

The company is setting up displays in their stores to get out the message.

"People get very excited because they think that's it wine and they're kind of like oh happy hour at the Kroger. Not really," said Emily Ogden from Kroger.

That's because the bottles sold here are just sparkling grape juice and are alcohol free because of a Tennessee law wine in retail food stores.

Kroger is working to change that law, one customer at a time.

"Where we're just taking the time to share information with our customers, engage them on the issue," said Melissa Eads from Kroger.

Store employees are letting customer know how they can get involved in the process to put wine on grocery shelves.

"A lot of people say yeah I'm for that, but they don't know what they can do to help make it happen," according to Eads.

This issue has come up year after year on Tennessee's Capitol Hill, but the bill always dies before action can be taken.

Many customers at the Belle Meade Kroger do not understand why lawmakers will not change the law.

"It's more convenient, you don't have to worry about trying to find a liquor store, other states have it. I think it's a great idea," said Jeff Halliburton who was shopping at Kroger Friday night.

Next door to the Kroger store the owner of Nashville Wine and Spirits does not agree adding wine to grocery stores is a great idea.

"They don't see the unintended consequences," Bill Bryant said.

Bryant feels wine in grocery stores will cost Tennessee jobs and the locally spent profits made off wine sales at liquor stores.

"The profits Kroger makes will go to Cincinnati, the profits Harris Teeter makes will go to North Carolina, the profits Publix makes will go to Florida," according to Bryant.

Kroger will have the wine display at its Bellevue store on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and also at its Brentwood store from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Thirty-five states in the nation, including five of Tennessee's eight neighboring states allow wine sales in retail food stores.


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