The Institute for Justice, a non-partisan law firm, has filed suit against Minnesota’s wacky double standard as it relates to direct wine shipping to customers. In Crockett v. Minnesota Department of Public Safety the Minnesota chapter of this non-profit group argues that free speech of wineries and MN consumers are being violated. The law here says that any winery in a reciprocal state – one that has an agreement to allow shipment of MN wine in – can ship their wine directly to consumers. They just can’t advertise the fact on their websites or accept web orders. This means that those of us in MN have to call or fax our orders into the wineries and some wineries just will not ship here, period. On the other hand, any MN liquor store can have an online store and advertise it as much as they want. Clearly unfair to both wineries and consumers, but protective of the three-tier status quo of wine distribution here.
As a Minnesota resident and wine lover I wish the IJ well in their quest and hope to report good news of their victory here in the future.