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Or try by participating in a grand experiment, anyway. If you are sick of reading all the beer porn out there and not actually being able to find many of those exotic brews locally, then we have potentially good news for you.
A new website just launched that allows beer fans to petition local bars and stores to carry specific breweries and beers. BeerPetitions.com lets you start a petition for a beer to be carried somewhere, digitally sign existing petitions, and get email alerts with updates about petitions for a specific location.
A cursory look at the site shows that not many petitions have been started yet and the zip code earch is not quite functional. So it’s too early to be useful, as BeerPetitions will only acheive it’s goal if an army of consumers create and actively promote petitions—enough potential customers for retailers to take notice.
But there’s more to it. Folks need to be knowledgeable enough to make realistic requests. Many American craft brewers restrict their supply intentionally. They want to be in control of how fresh their beer is when it arrives to a bar or store, make sure they can monitor how the beer is treated while it’s in the retailer’s hands, and only commit to the contracts they know they can fill based on how large their brewing operation is.
These restrictions mean that it is likely that petitions will be created for bars and shops to start stocking beers it is impossible for them to get. The site allows bars and retailers to comment on petitions, so they could use this feature to do everything from explain why they can’t get beer from a particular brewery to notify petition signers that they have their requested beer and offer discounts to those who helped get it there.
We suggest thinking small in terms of what you ask for but thinking big in terms of how you ask for it. Try creating petitions for beers that you’ve already seen somewhere in your region. These are more likely to be a viable possibility. But BeerPetitions will only be successful if you and your 300 friends on Facebook actively and aggressively create and sign petitions and tell everyone you know to do the same.