A new law lets New York craft beverage manufacturers get their businesses off the ground quicker, which could have some rippling effects for the economy.
A 2020 economic impact study of the state's distilling industry found it creates 6,000 jobs and generates about $530 million in wages.
The study found the jobs pay an average of $83,000 in wages and benefits. It also found there is also a multi-million dollar indirect impact on the hospitality industry, agriculture sector and manufacturers, bringing the total economic impact to $4.4 billion.
But none of it is possible if makers can't sell their spirits.
Brian Facquet is the head distiller at Do Good Spirits. He’s operated the award-winning distillery in Roscoe for 15 years. He’s also president of the New York State Distiller’s Guild, an organization that may see some new faces thanks to a new way to get businesses up and running.
Prior to December, it could take a new brewer or distillery up to a year to get going, mostly because of the red tape involved. That changed in December when Gov. Hochul signed off on legislation to effectively fast-track temporary permits for craft beverage makers.
For a small fee, businesses can now manufacture and sell alcoholic beverages in about half the time their primary application is approved.
Facquet said the benefits of the legislation are two-fold: Businesses are up and running faster, and there’s more time for the state to tie up loose ends.
“I think this new piece of legislation is an example of the three different people, the manufacturers, the state Liquor Authority and the (legislators), listening to the people and implementing something that is practical,” he said.
The state has 81 pending applications for full licenses, but they’re all able to get up and running, pending approval from the feds.
Facquet said he hopes more business-friendly regulatory structure encourages others to follow their passion, especially if it involves hops and other grains.
"You’re going to work hard and do it no matter what time it takes, but this is going to help people realize that dream and potential that much quicker,” Facquet said.