New law allows Michigan distilleries to purchase grains cheaper from local farmers

Whitmer signed House Bill 4842 on July 5

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer at Grand Traverse Distillery (Whitmer Administration)

LANSING, Mich. – On Tuesday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill into law hoping that it will help Michigan distilleries and local grain farmers.

House Bill 4842 aims to lower marked-up costs of Michigan grain for Michigan distillers as a way to encourage to use of Michigan ingredients. The new law also allows for an increase in the number of bottles distillers can produce. State Representative Pat Outman of Six Lakes state that this new law will help spur the growth of Michigan’s craft distillery industry as well as the state’s grain industry.

According to Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Director Gary McDowell, Michigan ranks seventh in the nation for craft distilleries. “By using more locally grown and sourced products, it creates additional opportunities for our farmers, keeps more jobs in Michigan and supports local economies across the state,” said McDowell in a press release.

Below is a list of the qualified grains:

  • Dry barley
  • Malted barley
  • Oats
  • Small grain
  • Cereal Grain
  • Potato
  • Corn
  • Fruit
  • Sugar beets
  • Honey

“House Bill 4842 represents an opportunity for Michigan to become one of the leading states in the country in support of the growing craft distilling industry,” said President of the Michigan Craft Distillers AssociationJon O’Connor in a press release. “By incentivizing the use of more Michigan grown agriculture to create distilled spirits, small distillers can further invest in new and innovative products, while working with agriculture producers to cultivate grains, fruits and other inputs needed to create world-class products.”

You can check out the new law below:



About the Author:

Elizabeth Washington is a Digital Producer and has been with Local 4 News since April 2022.