Author Topic: The ethics of keggles  (Read 5179 times)

Offline micsager

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The ethics of keggles
« on: February 04, 2015, 05:07:17 PM »
8-10 years ago, before I knew what I know now about kegs and such, I purchased a used home brewery system that included 3 keggles.  I used it for many years, and as I learned these were probably stolen kegs (I really have no clue) I began feeling bad about using them.  But of course, not bad enough to stop. 

3 years ago I did stop using them, but only because we got some bigger boilermakers from Blichmann.  Those three keggles have been in storage ever since.  The thing is, now what do I do with them?  I have no clue if they were purchased legitimately, but I rather doubt it.  The system was 5 years old when I bought it.  So it's been close to 20 years.  I'd like to sell them, but somehow that doesn't seem right to me.  but then, I don't want to store them for all eternity either. 

Any thoughts?

Offline jimmykx250

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2015, 05:24:18 PM »
At this point you are better off selling them other wise to the scrap yard they go and that would be a bigger waste. Nothing you can do at this point because they cant be re-used as kegs anyway.
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Offline BrewArk

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2015, 06:03:14 PM »
I have a similar story, in the 1980s I was unaware that the deposit left on a keg didn't cover the replacement.  I "purchased" my keg for the cost of a deposit from a liquor store.  I have been using my keggle since.

While I have some guilt now, it still doesn't seem appropriate to send a check to Coors now for my crime in the 80s.

For a time, I would assuage my guilt by buying their products from time to time, but after I became a shareholder, that seemed self serving.

I'd agree sell your keggles, keep 'em in circulation to help prevent others from being stolen.  If that's not enough, donate the proceeds to orphans in Haiti (as a shareholder in a brewery, that works for me).
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Offline yso191

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2015, 06:27:39 PM »
I went through the same issue.  I went to the local AB distributor and offered to pay for the kegs.  They basically laughed at me and said there was no way to do that.

Sell them.
Steve
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2015, 07:11:26 PM »
I have 3 kegs that were bought converted, one Sabco and 2 picos. Over the years I have noticed that all of these had some defects that were repaired so that they were usable as a kettle, but not as a pressure vessel.

These defects are from what would have been a small hole, and a medium, and then a longer gouge in the sides,  probably from being dropped. Looking closely you can see where they were welded and then ground down. The last one I noticed a few months ago, after a decade plus of use.

Edit - due to the nature of these and being purchased, no problem using them.
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Offline cascadesrunner

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2015, 07:25:26 PM »
You might be able to donate them to a local LHBS or fledgling club to teach the basics.  You will likely spend more time trying to locate one of these, but it would probably zero the balance on your conscience.
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Offline Cskypeck

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2015, 10:48:21 PM »
Kudos to micsager for being sensitive to the issue of keg ethics. The Brewers Association estimates that lost and stolen kegs cost craft brewers between $15 million and $20 million annually.

A deposit paid on a keg does not constitute ownership. Brewers rarely sell kegs. When you see a keg for sale on EBay or Craig’s List, chances are the seller does not have clear title.

Many states have laws prohibiting the scrapping of kegs. Others require clear title presented by the owner named on the keg. The California legislature has taken the extra step to make it illegal for any person to obliterate, mutilate or mark out the manufacturers name on a metal keg without the written consent of the manufacturer, providing a template for similar legislative action in other states.

Safety is also an issue. The Brewers Association has documented injuries to both brewers and distributors that have occurred because of “tampering”. A keg valve should never be removed from a keg without the proper tools and training. Whenever a keg valve is removed, the only safe way to reinstall the valve is to use a new lock ring. Several severe injuries have recently been attributed to “keg tampering” by untrained individuals using tools not designed for purpose.

www.Kegreturn.com is a resource that facilitates the return of kegs to your favorite craft brewer. You can learn more about the problem of keg losses as well as the ins and outs of keg etiquette. 

Keep brewing great beer!

Chuck Skypeck
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2015, 02:30:39 AM »
As a practical view point, at least in Washington State, if you paid a deposit your fail to return is a civil issue. If you walk up behind a brewery and grab an empty, that's theft

Offline EHall

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2015, 10:43:35 PM »
I bought a couple of kegs off a liquor store years ago... yea, probably 'stolen'. I don't feel guilty about it, they were a bit dented up and from budwieser. I didn't hurt any craft brewery in the process. I don't know why there always has to be ethics around buying used kegs... there is so much illegal stuff going on everyday, much much worse than this and we want to accept the guilt of buying a possibly 'stolen' keg... there are bigger threats out there to worry about.
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Offline Stevie

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2015, 11:10:28 PM »
I bought a couple of kegs off a liquor store years ago... yea, probably 'stolen'. I don't feel guilty about it, they were a bit dented up and from budwieser. I didn't hurt any craft brewery in the process. I don't know why there always has to be ethics around buying used kegs... there is so much illegal stuff going on everyday, much much worse than this and we want to accept the guilt of buying a possibly 'stolen' keg... there are bigger threats out there to worry about.
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Offline micsager

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2015, 11:20:31 PM »
I bought a couple of kegs off a liquor store years ago... yea, probably 'stolen'. I don't feel guilty about it, they were a bit dented up and from budwieser. I didn't hurt any craft brewery in the process. I don't know why there always has to be ethics around buying used kegs... there is so much illegal stuff going on everyday, much much worse than this and we want to accept the guilt of buying a possibly 'stolen' keg... there are bigger threats out there to worry about.

I don't even know what to say. 

Offline narvin

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2015, 01:44:57 AM »
If it says Budweiser I wouldn't give a flying eff.  They have so much power and lobbyist money that if it actually affected them, they'd bribe someone to change the deposit law.
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Offline troybinso

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2015, 05:48:46 AM »
If it says Budweiser I wouldn't give a flying eff.  They have so much power and lobbyist money that if it actually affected them, they'd bribe someone to change the deposit law.

Any brewery or distributor can immediately "change the deposit law" by charging the face value of the keg as a deposit. I don't get why the keg deposit can be as low as 20 or 30 bucks when the replacement cost is at 4 times that. Charge $100 bucks for a deposit a see how many kegs go missing.

Offline phunhog

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #13 on: February 06, 2015, 07:25:42 AM »
If it says Budweiser I wouldn't give a flying eff.  They have so much power and lobbyist money that if it actually affected them, they'd bribe someone to change the deposit law.

Any brewery or distributor can immediately "change the deposit law" by charging the face value of the keg as a deposit. I don't get why the keg deposit can be as low as 20 or 30 bucks when the replacement cost is at 4 times that. Charge $100 bucks for a deposit a see
 how many kegs go missing.

I agree!  When I rent a car, a movie, or even a library book and fail to return it I am on the hook for the replacement value. No reason breweries can't be the same.

Offline narvin

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Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2015, 12:59:38 PM »

Any brewery or distributor can immediately "change the deposit law" by charging the face value of the keg as a deposit. I don't get why the keg deposit can be as low as 20 or 30 bucks when the replacement cost is at 4 times that. Charge $100 bucks for a deposit a see how many kegs go missing.

Some of the ABC states specify the deposit or maximum deposit by law.  But in general, they don't want to raise the deposit because they make more money catering to the generally underage, poor frat-boy crowd which pays with whatever little cash they have.  The lack of ethics seems to have worked pretty well for the multi-millionaire executives at BMC  :D
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