One Illinois industry would see its production cap nearly tripled if a bill in Springfield passes. Noelle Diprizio and her husband Jay started Chicago Distilling Co. in 2013. They use local grains and Illinois employees. They want to expand and create more jobs, but Illinois has a limit on how much they can sell. A bill making its way through the Springfield legislature would lift the cap on Noelle and others looking to fill the demand for their locally-made spirits. She says the bill would allow them to compete with distillers in nearby states without a cap on production.
“From a surrounding standpoint of other states around us, Illinois is at the bottom of the totem pole in terms of how much we’re allowed to produce.” DiPrizio said.
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She says without the bill, they couldn’t justify expanding their business.
“Illinois wouldn’t be a viable state for this to happen if the production limit doesn’t increase,” she said, “It’s not a good business model to open a facility that you are capped at 35,000 gallons.”
The legislation would also help new distilleries get their name out by allowing for public tastings.
Rep. Zalewski says opening up the cap would make Illinois more competitive with neighboring states like Wisconsin that has no limits to how much booze they can make.