Wine in grocery sales exceed expectations in first year

Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – While more than 100 new laws go into effect on Saturday, wine drinkers are celebrating the one-year mark since their drink of choice hit grocery store shelves.

Many behind the push for the legislation last year say the first year has been more than they could have imagined.

The current law allows grocery stores to sell wine Monday through Saturday, excluding Sunday and holidays.

“I was probably one of the first ones in line,” one shopper told News 2.

Donna Doggett has been shopping Kroger aisles for her wine wants over the past year.

“The liquor probably didn’t hit the shelf before I came in a got it because they have a great selection of wine.”

Photo: WKRN

While shocking up for the holiday weekend, Doggett finds it more convenient to have a one-stop shop now.

“You are going to stop here anyway and put your meal together and if you do like a nice wine with your meal, you are going to stop by here and get the wine too,” said Doggett.

One of the lawmakers behind the legislation believes the turnout has been stellar for both parties.

With the law, grocery stores are able to sell wine and liquor stores can sell groceries, like mixers and food, to go with their spirits.

“It’s been very successful,” said Murfreesboro area State Senator Bill Ketron.

Ketron fought for years to allow the sales.

“There was a lot of change of philosophy in our state because we were the first state in 40 years to pass this bill,” explained Ketron.

He says he has looked into legislation that would allow stores to sell on Sunday and holidays.

“I had the bill this year and I polled it, it wasn’t as high as what I thought it should be for selling on Sundays. The urgency is not what it was for wine in grocery stores.”

POLL: Are you in favor of Sunday liquor sales?

Photo: WKRN

That is something Kroger spokesperson Melissa Eads says the company would like to change.

“We know it is what our customers want, they want to be able to purchase wine when they are able to purchase beer,” Eads said.

However, for now, they plan to celebrate this one-year milestone in style.

“Wine sales have certainly exceeded our expectations this first year and we hope to be able to continue to provide our customers with that convenience,” said Eads.

Kroger is offering special deals on wine and cases of wines this weekend.

The store is also offering free wine bottle etching at some Middle Tennessee locations.

Those stores include the Green Hills Kroger on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. and the new Hendersonville Kroger on Main Street on Monday.