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You pass our trucks every day. I’m sure you’ve noticed — they say “Coors Light,” “Guinness,” “Peace Tree” or another brand of recognizable adult beverage of moderation.

Those trucks carry precious cargo. But, it’s not just the beer.

It’s the person behind the wheel.

That person is a beer distributor, and they work hard every day transporting beer to your favorite local bar, restaurant, grocery, and convenience store.

Beer distributors are part of a three-tiered system of alcohol responsibility comprised of brewers, distributors, and retailers. This heavily-regulated system is essential to keeping alcohol consumption safe and responsible.

Beer distributors don’t only deliver your favorite drinks. They deliver a huge economic impact to your community, over $579 million dollars.

In Iowa alone, there are 54 beer distribution facilities with over 1,343 employees. These men and women make a combined $102.2 million dollars in salaries and wages. They live in our communities, support local charities and events, and drive economic development. Distributors have invested over $1.7 million into their communities and pay over $104.4 million in federal, state, and local taxes that contribute to the safety and wellness of Iowa.

These businesses have more than an economic impact; they also have a real human impact. They promote charities and community programs, sponsor causes and events, and participate in activities that make our communities’ better.

Last month, beer distributors were in schools fitting children for winter boots and supplies. They also held events to raise money for sexual assault victims. These are just a couple examples of distributors investing in their communities.

So, the next time you pass a beer truck or see a distributor stocking shelves at your favorite retailer, give them a wave – shake their hand – thank them. They got up before the sun to deliver so much more than beer.

Mike Brewington, Des Moines

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