What is the worst state in America?
Arizona is known for its sweltering heat and California is known for its high taxes and homelessness while post-industrial states like Ohio and New Jersey continue to collect rust. Meanwhile, the mythical “Florida man” makes us wonder what the swamp-dwellers of the Sunshine State are smoking. However, none of these states have committed the grave sin of alcohol abuse on such an egregious scale as was recently committed in the state of Utah.
Utah, a state ruled by patriarchs of the Mormon faith, has long been at war with alcohol. And on Friday the 13th, the Salt Lake Tribune reported that the state’s liquor authorities literally poured thousands of gallons of perfectly drinkable beer down the drain in a wanton act of aggression against the beloved suds.
The amount of cold ones destroyed by the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control was worth nearly $18,000, but acquiring the ill-fated brew cost taxpayers in the state nearly $10,000.
The beer was discontinued after state law changed to allow higher-alcohol beer to be sold in the state, finally bringing Utah into the 21st century. Puritanical laws had previously prohibited grocery and convenience stores from selling any beer stronger than 4 percent alcohol, with only liquor stores and bottle shops being allowed to sell the stronger stuff.
Authorities claim that they were bound by law to dump the discontinued beer from state-owned liquor stores, but we beer-imbibers know well that they could have found less offensive ways to dispose of the stuff.
However, the law—which went into effect on Halloween—did lead to massive markdowns on beer from the state-owned stores. 275 cases of beer—numbering roughly 6,600 bottles and cans—were left over after the massive fire sale.
According to DABC officials, the liquid gold was re-purposed into natural gas and fertilizers alongside food waste, while the empty bottles and cans were recycled.
Sustainability manager Morgan Bowerman said:
“If you can’t buy it and you can’t drink it, this is the best place for it.”
We’re still left wondering: couldn’t Utah officials simply hold a massive red-tag sale for the beer? Or better yet, hold a massive holiday-themed beerfest for thirsty Utahns?