PA adding liquor to kiosk vending

As one who lived in Pennsylvania for varying periods several times, I must confess to my amazement at the Keystone State's recent liberalization in its attitude toward adult beverages.

The generic "state store," the wine and liquor shop that was the only place consumers were allowed to make such purchases, was seen as an implacable, iron-fisted control by the state that resulted in little variety or convenience for most consumers.

However, the increase in the number of commercial wineries and changing attitudes in other states that could be cited as reasons to re-visit sales points have made quite a difference.

First it was the trials with wine-dispensing kiosks in various grocery stores around the state. Now, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board plans to begin a pilot program that would permit sales of hard liquor at those same vending kiosks.

PLCB spokesperson Stacey Witalec says the initial rollout probably will involve fewer than a dozen of the current locations, and there is no word yet on precisely what products will be sold.

The devices dispense products to consumers only after they swipe their ID cards and breathe into a sensor to prove their age and sobriety.


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