NM wineries plead with governor to allow for reopening | KOB 4

NM wineries plead with governor to allow for reopening

Patrick Hayes
Updated: June 17, 2020 05:23 PM
Created: June 17, 2020 04:25 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- New Mexico wineries sent a letter to the governor, asking for permission to open by Father's Day.

"Our state's wineries, vineyards and tasting rooms have waited patiently for the administration, to acknowledge the importance of our industry and our impact on agriculture, tourism and the economy," the letter says.

Chris Goblet, the executive director of the New Mexico Wine Association, said he just wants the industry to be treated fairly.

"Winery owners are mom-and-pop businesses just as you would think of any farm," he said. "It's an agriculture industry."

Restaurants and breweries can sell local wine, but wineries are still supposed to be closed per the governor's public health order. 

"When they closed down businesses, breweries and distilleries were mentioned -- wineries were not. When they were reopened, breweries were mentioned, wineries were no," Goblet said. "We don't understand where we've been caught in between but it just seems like the communication has been less than ideal and it's left a lot of confusion out there for wineries who want to do the right thing, but they don't know what the administration expects right now."

According to Goblet, wineries have had a $60 million economic impact on New Mexico. 

In response to the letter, the governor's office released the following statement:

I understand that the Governor's Office received the letter and that they have also been in contact with the Economic Recovery Council. As it stands, those with "small brewer" licenses are currently able to open. Certainly we hope to be able to allow more establishments to open as we continue to slow the spread of COVID-19 and move forward. -- Nora Meyers Sackett, press secretary for Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham

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