Although many Pennsylvania wineries are not on store shelves now, the budding market will soon expand. With the increase of interest in local wineries, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is looking to add to the in-store selection.
“The Pennsylvania wineries and industry, in general, has experience exponential growth in the last decade,” Pennsylvania Winery Association Executive Director Jennifer Eckinger said. “We’re hoping that some of the wineries will look to sell in their local stores.”
During the Pennsylvania Wine Show in early January, Eckinger said, the PLCB announced that they were looking to partner with local wineries in order to provide their wines to the public via the local liquor stores. While some local wineries are available through the PLCB already, many are not.
“We’re hoping that some of the local wineries will look to sell in their local stores,” Eckinger said. “There’s a customer base [for Pennsylvania wines].”
Pennsylvania produces more than 387,000 cases of wine a year and contributes $2.35 billion dollars to the state economy, according to the Pennsylvania Winery Association’s Economic Impact Report released in 2009. Eckinger said this makes Pennsylvania the seventh largest producer of wine in the United States.
“People are pursuing their passions,” Eckinger said. “The benefits of Pennsylvania wineries and their wines are the sheer diversity…. There’s a wine that everyone would find that they like.”
She said with more than 40 varietals of wines produced in Pennsylvania, which range from natives like concord and Niagara to French hybrids like chamborcin and traminette, there is a wine for all tastes.
Eckinger said the expansion into the PLCB liquor stores will develop throughout 2013. Other ways to purchase Pennsylvania wines includes the winery shops and satellite stores; some farmers markets; and online purchase. She said even though wineries in other states might not be able to ship to Pennsylvania residents, in-state wineries can.
For information on Pennsylvania wineries, visit www.pennsylvaniawine.com.