Last week, we mentioned that the XL Center, along with other public investments like the Convention Center, should carry Connecticut products - like Connecticut Beer. Well, little did we know (the XL Center didn't tell us, nothing unusual there) that Hartford Distributors actually does, just now, sell Connecticut Beer from two stands at the XL Center!
If the stands are successful there, why not at Rentslear Field, the Convention Center, the hotels... Again, if the object of these massive public investments is to bring commerce to Connecticut and Hartford why not use local products?
Anyhow let's talk about beer, since that's what Hartford Distributors sells. Again, little did we know of the extent of the growing brewing industry in our state. Right now, check out this list:
• City Steam, brewed in Hartford
• Thomas Hooker, brewed in Bloomfield
• Weed Brewing, also in Bloomfield
• Stony Creek, Branford
• Arch Ale, Hartford Better Beer
• Back East, Another Bloomfield Brewer
• Cavalry Brewing, Oxford
• Charter Oak Brewing, New Canaan
• GW Brewing, New London
• Safe Harbor, New London
And, our old friends, Olde Burnside of Pipes in the Valley fame, East Hartford.
Word is that three more beers are coming on to the market. One wonders, can all these be successful? If they are great beers they will succeed. Run of the mill, you're a flash in the pan.
So, with numerous beer tasting events, displays, focused efforts, craft beer months (April 2013 is next) and the Rising Pint Brewfest next May11th at the Rent, Hartford Distributors is really stepping out.
Now, our point is that the newly formed C.R.D.A. should encourage such efforts in many ways. As requests for proposals come out, local products, local people, local media outlets, locally focused events all should be part of the mix. Why not?
Again and again, if the object is to increase Connecticut commerce through these huge investments, why not demand that these outfits that run our Connecticut taxpayer funded facilities pay attention to readily available Connecticut products.
As we recycle these dollars through our communities, everyone benefits: more goods and services available, more jobs created, more taxes paid. Maybe C.R.D.A. could consider all these facits as contracts come due.