Dogs will again be welcomed back in breweries and taprooms in North Carolina thanks to a bill passed by state lawmakers and signed into law by Governor Roy Cooper.
The law changes the way breweries and taprooms are categorized with regards to the preparation of food. Prior to this new law, Guilford County Health Department leaders said if a place served food or drink in any kind of container (like glassware) that has to be cleaned and is reused, the business needed a food service permit. And most places that need a food establishment permit were classified as restaurants. Taprooms and breweries can also be classified as a drink stand, but are under the same rules as a restaurant when it comes to pets: no pets inside, only service animals.
The new law, known as Senate Bill 290, changes that categorization to allow for breweries and taprooms to follow different sets of guidelines.
The bill gained traction after Joymongers in Greensboro got a written warning from the health department back in February. At the time, taprooms fell under the same rules as restaurants.
The new law also includes provisions that would mean distilleries in the state would be able to grow. They'll be able to sell alcohol drinks on site, including mixed drinks, wine and beer.
The new law will go into effect on September 1st.