Alcohol content

I'm relatively new to the US (California, to be exact.)
I'm used to being able to tell what the alcohol content in a given beer is. Most beers sold here (maybe just the ones made in CA, or maybe all US beers?) don't have the content indicated.
Why is this? Is it a law? In Canada, where I'm from, it's always clearly labelled.
Reply to
Relaxification
California? My sympathies. Just don't start thinking that's representative of the whole US.
It used to be a law that beer could not have the alcohol content listed (while liquor and wine had to have it; go figure). That law changed several years ago, so it's up to the brewer/importer whether it's listed. FWIW I see more beers with abv listed than otherwise.
Reply to
Joel
[...]
With a notable exception: If a given state chose to require beers to list alcohol content, like Oregon does/did. Not all beer sold here *did* have alcohol content listed, though, I suppose due to slackery on the part of out-of-state brewers.
I think it's still a requirement in Orygun.
Reply to
sleurB kciN

It's a bit of a joke in the rest of the country to make fun of California to compensate for how depressed everyone else is that they don't live here.
If you're in Venice, you're down the street from some excellent beer places in Santa Monica - the Library Ale House and Father's Office. Haven't found anything real top-notch for beer in Venice itself.
-Steve
Reply to
Steve Jackson

Yeah, the Ale House is great. Haven't been to Father's Office yet, but I hear it's good.
It's true - life in SoCal is amazing. I've just got to figure out a way not to have to drive as much as I do and I'll be completely happy. As long as that way doesn't include being unemployed.
Reply to
Relaxification
That's one big minus about SoCal. Smog is another. (Gee, think they could be related? ;-)
Reply to
Joel
Getting back to the original question, even if the bottle doesn't have the alcohol content many times you can find it on the company's web site. I've got a small alcohol content data base on my Palm so I can compare depending on the mood I'm in.
Reply to
Nels E Satterlund
wrote:
This is one of those post-prohibition state law things that foreigners find completely nuts. Some states require alcohol content to be listed (fair enough), some don't seem to mind, and some require that it *not* be listed. Presumably the thinking is that people will always choose the strongest drink if the alcohol content is listed (are these state legislators all reformed alcoholics?) Meanwhile, it's impossible to work out how much you've drunk.
Don't some states require alcohol to be stated as a percentage by weight rather than by volume?
Best regards, Paul -- Paul Sherwin Consulting
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Reply to
Paul Sherwin

Mainly in the "maintstream" beers. Pretty much every craft brewery that lists it does so by volume, at least from what I've seen.
The large brewers, if they label, will usually do so by weight. Largely because certain states - Minnesota and Oklahoma come to mind - allow sales of only "three-two" beer in groceries and the like, and stronger beers have to be sold in liquor stores. The three-two beers reference the max alcohol content, measured in ABW, of 3.2 that is allowed to be sold in groceries. Since they often had to brew different versions of their beers to reflect that, it became customary for a time to list by weight.
-STeve
Reply to
Steve Jackson
Steve Jackson a écrit :
Ah right... thanks for the precisions Steve. I assume this situation with brewers using ABV and brewers using ABW does little in terms of easing the average consumer's confusion ?...
Reply to
The Submarine Captain
This whole thread seems to be some sort of "retro pre-internet" 20 year old thread. MOST of the US beers I see these days have alcohol content listed on the label (and it happened quietly and without much fanfare, IIRC)- I didn't realize that it was still a state-by-state thing. AND, checking my refrigerator, Victory, Avery, Yards, Dogfish Head & North Coast all list ABV (as does Anheuser-Busch- I found a Bud can in the road and just check the label in the recycle can). Couldn't find any alcohol listing on a couple of Brooklyn and Heavyweight products, tho'.
But, since I take it the Submarine Captain isn't in the US, one can't expect him to know this. He is right about recalling the former preference of US beers to list alcohol by weight, which gave their beer a lower number than, say, Canadian beers, since alcohol weights less than water. And thus the myth (currently being repeated in the thread called "American beer compared to others") that American beer has less alcohol.
Reply to
jesskidden

Very little. And it's not just the States. It's what prompts Canadians to claim their beer is so much stronger than American, never mind the fact that the respective ABW and ABV values end up coming out to show startlingly similar levels of alcohol.
-Steve
Reply to
Steve Jackson

Most American beers? I remain skeptical.
It's less of a state-by-state thing, but that's a recent development. It's only in the last couple years that the Supreme Court weighed in saying that states can't prohibit the display of that info, as some did. Or the bureau formerly known as the ATF. Can't remember whose rule was struck down, the states' or theirs.
He's Swiss.
-Steve
Reply to
Steve Jackson

No, no, remain skeptical, I said "most of the US beers I see..." by which I meant "whose labels I bother to read" since technically I do 'see' all those doors of A-B, Miller, Pabst and Coors brands. I WAS surprised to see it listed on A-B brands.
I only mentioned it because the OP in Calif. DIDN'T find it on the beers he was looking at.
IIRC, didn't Coors (or Miller) go to court over not being able to list alc. content a few years ago? I thought that's what did it.
I understand. (Hey, so was the first "Kidden" in the America, circa 1740...)
Reply to
jesskidden
wrote:
I guess the big brewers like A-B and Coors don't export beer, they own subsidiaries who brew beer for local markets. Any beer sold in the EU has to have the ABV stated on the bottle (and the 'Best before' date). US craft brewers are obviously interested in selling beer in international markets so use ABV.
Best regards, Paul
-- Paul Sherwin Consulting
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Reply to
Paul Sherwin
I don't know- I'd guess that the small amount of craft brew that's exported from the US probably has separate labels from the stuff they sell at home, to meet the particular rules of the importing countries. Certainly most of the imports we get obviously are labeled for the US (including some who leave the BEST BEFORE date off the bottle, even tho' there's a place for it on the label).
I'd say that's a small percentage of the total craft brewers- most can't even handle shipping their beers one or two states away...
But, getting back to original question (so, NO store clerks read this newsgroup? We really have to wait until someone goes to the store tomorrow and check out the megabrew labels?) do ANY US beers that DO list alcohol content still use ABW (other than in 3.2 states)?
Reply to
jesskidden

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