According to the Portland Press Herald, the long battle over whether breweries in industrial zones should be able to sell snacks to patrons is over. City officials reversed course last night, decided to allow breweries to sell snacks even though they may be operating in industrial zones.

Portland zoning laws prohibit the sale of snacks as well as merchandise, like mugs and shirts. Several breweries located on Industrial Way in Portland, including Allagash and Foundation, were adversely affected when Portland officials decided in November to stop those breweries from selling ancillary items. Allagash took the lead in fighting the ruling and last night they were vindicated.

While the snack ban was lifted, there may be new fees headed in the direction of breweries. Breweries may be forced to acquire licenses, which could cost $500. Janice Gardner, Portland's business license administrator, claims that breweries around Portland are beginning to function more and more like actual bars. Thus, they should be required to get licenses.

Gardner told the Portland Press Herald, “Breweries, wineries, and distilleries are now destinations for consumers to drink at their leisure, consume food from food vendors, and listen to bands. This business model closely resembles traditional restaurants and bars. In the interest of fairness, the City Clerk’s Office believes licensing breweries, wineries and distilleries is appropriate.”

Read all of the details about the city's decision, as well as potential future consequences on smaller breweries in this Portland Press Herald article.