California is a fine example of that. And it isn't even part of the old Confederacy.
|Growlers from my collection|
The California Department of Alcohol Beverage Control has decided that breweries may fill generic growlers or branded growlers from other breweries as long as the contents are then appropriately labeled and there is no inaccurate information visible on the container.
I have no idea what happens if a brewery happens to violate this law...if it's wrist slap or something more serious. But the result of the law is clear enough: breweries are inclined to fill non-branded growlers. That way, they avoid the possibility of contradictory information on the container..
That's not the end of it, either. Some breweries have chosen to take this arrangement a step further by saying they will fill only their own growlers. Such is the case with Russian River Brewing, which issued a statement pointing to the superior quality of their growler on several counts and the need to fill only that container. This contradicted the brewery's previous position, but never mind.
With respect to Russian River, I can almost sympathize. They don't want to bother with the labeling issue. Filling only Russian River growlers avoids that problem completely. I get it. But I don't understand the garbage about having a superior growler. All growlers have their issues with ease of filling, seal, sanitation, etc. There is no such thing as a perfect growler, new or used.
I won't even take a position on the pluses and minuses of dispensing beer in growlers. The various issues connected with that have been well-reviewed in the past. Sometimes getting beer to go in a growler makes good sense. Sometimes not. Growlers can definitely affect the quality of the beer.
|Mixing brands not possible in California|