Kansas home brewers could soon legally share beer, wine - KCTV5

Kansas home brewers could soon legally share beer, wine

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OVERLAND PARK, KS (KCTV) -

Home brewers in Kansas could soon legally share their beer and wine without fear of breaking the law.

Under the current law, home brewers can only share their brew with their own family.

The group of friends that started the Brew Lab in Overland Park are just one group that petitioned the state to change Kansas home brewing laws. Click here for more information.

At the Brew Lab people can select the perfect grain and handpick their favorite malt and yeast to brew the exact flavor of beer for their taste buds.

Handcrafted batches made at the Brew Lab are carefully lowered into a fermentation chamber for two weeks.

"Beer is fun. People like drinking it. So why not make it too?" said Brew Lab chief financial officer Justin Waters.

The Brew Lab sells all of the equipment and ingredients needed to brew beer at home or brew at the store with the help of a brewmaster.

Employees often surprise their customers when they inform them about Kansas home brewing laws.

"You can't share it with your friends. You can't share it with people you invite to a party. That is kind of a shocker when we explain that to them," Waters said.

That could change.

Kansas House members approved a bill that eases restrictions on home brewing with a 111-7 vote, sending the measure to the Senate. The bill allows brewers to share as long as they do not sell their brew for profit.

"Most people start brewing in their garage or in their house. When you brew something and it tastes great, you want others to be able to taste it. So they can see how it tastes too. Under the current law, you can't do that," Waters said.

If the new law passes, home brewers would be able to enter their brews into competitions as long as the winner doesn't benefit financially.

"It looks like it moved through the House with a landslide vote, so I'm hoping the Senate will do the same thing," Waters said.

Under the current law, a home brew can't be shared unless the brewer obtains state licenses for manufacturing or distributing alcoholic beverages.

The founders of Brew Lab believe the changes that allow sharing could increase business.  They say home-brewing competitions could also benefit the local economy.

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