Government shutdown puts Bogus Brewing on hold

Credit: Eric Turner / KTVB

Collin Rudeen, chief brewing officer of Bogus Brewing in Boise

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by Bonnie Shelton

Bio | Email | Follow: @BonnieKTVB

KTVB.COM

Posted on October 14, 2013 at 9:08 AM

BOISE -- The government shutdown is affecting an unlikely industry -- beer.

That's because the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), a federal agency, is closed and therefore not processing any new permits for breweries, labels or recipes.

Managers at Bogus Brewing in Boise say the shutdown means their plans to open a new brewery on Broad Street are on hold.

"So it's in process or it was in process," said Collin Rudeen, chief brewing officer.

He submitted the brewery's paperwork to the TTB this summer, but now that the office is closed he has no idea when Bogus Brewing could get the permits it needs to start operating.

Bogus Brewing is community-owned, meaning about 150 shareholders have contributed $1,000 each to be a part of the venture.

Rudeen said he built two extra months into the company's start-up plan in case something went wrong, but that buffer is slipping away.

"It shouldn't have been a problem, but it makes me nervous I mean, who knows how long the government is going to stay shut down," said Rudeen.

Craft brewers across the country are feeling the squeeze. Especially those waiting for recipe approval from the TTB for seasonal beers that are popular products during the holidays.

Because no one is working at the TTB, no new beers are being approved, but already established and permitted breweries can still produce beers that have the necessary paperwork.

Brewers at Sockeye Brewing in Boise told us they already have all the permits they need to make their prized product. All labels have been approved, too.

Rudeen hopes the government shutdown ends soon so he can start making large batches of Bogus Brewing beers, including its "Hip Check" IPA.

"Who knows, now," he said of the process to get set-up.

In the meantime, he said he'll focus on getting the former concert venue the company purchased as its brewery into the best shape it can be, so things will be streamlined once Bogus gets its permit to brew and labels approved.

Although the TTB is closed and isn't issuing permits or label and recipe approvals, the federal agency is still collecting taxes from brewers.

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