Membership questions? Log in issues? Email info@brewersassociation.org

Author Topic: The ethics of keggles  (Read 10490 times)

narvin

  • Guest
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #45 on: February 07, 2015, 03:11:02 pm »
I get it, and we shouldn't be stealing kegs.

But the big breweries don't really care and that contributes to the problem.

I tried to return some empty kegs a few years ago that got left behind by a caterer.  Returning the kegs was hard to do.

The distributor didn't want them.  The brewery (Budweiser, if I recall correctly) didn't want to be bothered.  I don't recall the resolution, but we finally found someone to take them.  We might have just taken them to liquor store and left them.  There's a thread on here somewhere because I posted about it at the time.

This was experience when a neighbor gave me a keg that he feel like returning.  I called the liquor store and the distributor whose label was on the keg.  They didn't care and seemed put out that I was insisting that I didn't want to steal their keg.   ???

I took it back to the distributor and basically made them take it.  Seemed kind of crazy.  I don't condone stealing kegs but they make it very hard to be honest.

Paul
I think a major part of the problem is that the distributor and liquor store have no financial risk. The kegs don't belong to them so they lose nothing if you keep it. On the other hand, they do lose if they go out of their way to let people return them.

And, who does the distributor have to please most?  The big breweries.  If anything, you can blame them for using cheap kegs as a loss leader to get the people who don't always return kegs to come in and buy beer.  In the end, it'a almost a subsidy, and it hurts the small brewer.

S. cerevisiae

  • Guest
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #46 on: February 07, 2015, 05:24:03 pm »
Regardless, not returning a keg is a civil issue, not a crime.

Actually, not returning a keg is considered to be crime (misappropriation) in many states.  The states control deposits and the laws pertaining to kegs.  It's part of the three-tier distribution system that was put into place after the repeal of Prohibition.

Here's Missouri's keg deposit law:

www.moga.mo.gov/mostatutes/stathtml/31100000821.html

"3. Each retail licensee shall require each keg purchaser to present valid identification and a minimum deposit of fifty dollars per keg at the time of purchase. On the identification form provided by the division of alcohol and tobacco control the licensee shall record for each keg sale the date of sale, the size of keg, keg tag identification number, the amount of container deposit, the name, address, and date of birth of the purchaser, and the form of identification presented by such purchaser. The purchaser shall sign a statement at the time of purchase attesting to the accuracy of the purchaser's name and address and acknowledging that misuse of the keg or its contents may result in civil liability, criminal prosecution, or both. The licensee shall retain the identification form for a minimum of three months following the sale of the keg."


Offline klickitat jim

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 8604
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #47 on: February 07, 2015, 05:48:48 pm »
I dont know anything about criminal law in other states. The first time that I stated that not returning kegs is a civil issue I was talking about the OPs State (Washington). I suppose when I restated it I should have repeated that I mean in Washington State. Having said that, I'd be surprised if anyone in any state has ever been arrested and convicted for failure to return keg. Regardless if a State or every State has a regulation stating that not returning MAY be a crime. The Missouri regulation you quote is ambiguous as to what precisely MAY result in a crime. Misuse of the keg? Or misuse of its contents? If you step back and read that regulation you'll see that it is a requirement placed on the keg distributor.

For example, someone rents a TV and only pays the first month... or buys a car and only makes the first payment... those are civil issues. Its on the company to enforce the contract and repossess the TV, the car, or in this case, the Keg.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 05:53:12 pm by klickitat jim »

Offline phunhog

  • Brewer
  • ****
  • Posts: 258
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #48 on: February 07, 2015, 06:39:13 pm »
Regardless, not returning a keg is a civil issue, not a crime.

Actually, not returning a keg is considered to be crime (misappropriation) in many states.  The states control deposits and the laws pertaining to kegs.  It's part of the three-tier distribution system that was put into place after the repeal of Prohibition.

Here's Missouri's keg deposit law:

www.moga.mo.gov/mostatutes/stathtml/31100000821.html

"3. Each retail licensee shall require each keg purchaser to present valid identification and a minimum deposit of fifty dollars per keg at the time of purchase. On the identification form provided by the division of alcohol and tobacco control the licensee shall record for each keg sale the date of sale, the size of keg, keg tag identification number, the amount of container deposit, the name, address, and date of birth of the purchaser, and the form of identification presented by such purchaser. The purchaser shall sign a statement at the time of purchase attesting to the accuracy of the purchaser's name and address and acknowledging that misuse of the keg or its contents may result in civil liability, criminal prosecution, or both. The licensee shall retain the identification form for a minimum of three months following the sale of the keg."
So after three months what happens?  It would seem that if breweries were concerned they would get law enforcement involved since it could involve criminal prosecution. Let's face it.....Big Beer doesn't really care about getting the kegs back or at least enough to actively pursue it.

Offline klickitat jim

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 8604
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #49 on: February 07, 2015, 07:02:15 pm »
Regardless, not returning a keg is a civil issue, not a crime.

Actually, not returning a keg is considered to be crime (misappropriation) in many states.  The states control deposits and the laws pertaining to kegs.  It's part of the three-tier distribution system that was put into place after the repeal of Prohibition.

Here's Missouri's keg deposit law:

www.moga.mo.gov/mostatutes/stathtml/31100000821.html

"3. Each retail licensee shall require each keg purchaser to present valid identification and a minimum deposit of fifty dollars per keg at the time of purchase. On the identification form provided by the division of alcohol and tobacco control the licensee shall record for each keg sale the date of sale, the size of keg, keg tag identification number, the amount of container deposit, the name, address, and date of birth of the purchaser, and the form of identification presented by such purchaser. The purchaser shall sign a statement at the time of purchase attesting to the accuracy of the purchaser's name and address and acknowledging that misuse of the keg or its contents may result in civil liability, criminal prosecution, or both. The licensee shall retain the identification form for a minimum of three months following the sale of the keg."
So after three months what happens?  It would seem that if breweries were concerned they would get law enforcement involved since it could involve criminal prosecution. Let's face it.....Big Beer doesn't really care about getting the kegs back or at least enough to actively pursue it.
After three months they are no longer required to retain the record. Thats what happens.

We have a similar regulation and its so the fuz can backtrack from a minor party and figure out who is potentially guilty of purchasing the keg for the minors.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 07:04:40 pm by klickitat jim »

Offline Joe Sr.

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 4467
  • Chicago - NORTH SIDE
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #50 on: February 07, 2015, 07:24:39 pm »
In the past there was such a thing as returnable bottles. You would pay a bottle deposit and you would get your money back when you returned the bottles.  If you never returned the bottles would that constitute stealing/theft?  Isn't the keg just one big returnable bottle?

But I returned the bottles.

I think that the black and white moralism doesn't always apply.

It's one thing to not return a keg and turn it into a keggle.

It's a different thing for people who have bought kegs that are already repurposed.

I wouldn't lose sleep over it, but I also wouldn't purposely steal a keg.

And I know for a fact that I don't have a 100% record for returning returnable bottles.  I'll bet a whole batch of beer that Denny doesn't either.
It's all in the reflexes. - Jack Burton

Offline pete b

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 4167
  • Barre, Ma
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #51 on: February 08, 2015, 07:07:54 am »
I personally have an intention to not take anything  that is not freely offered. That being said the level of harm caused does matter I think. Turning a keg into a keggle isn't the same as stealing a blichman from someone's garage.
Don't let the bastards cheer you up.

Offline majorvices

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11342
  • Polka. If its too loud you're too young.
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #52 on: February 08, 2015, 07:17:38 am »
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.

States set keg deposits.

That is not true. Maybe there are some states that do, but we, at Yellowhammer, decide what our deposit is going to be. The distributor has their deposit too. The state has nothing to do with it. It is an agreement between us and the distro. We can raise or lower our deposit (and have!)

About 1/2 of our total keg inventory is a lease, so if someone steals one of those kegs (and I have had people come up to me and say "Hey, I bought one of your kegs!") then we are still paying the lease while some homebrewer is cutting the lid off it and making beer at home.

Kids, don't do meth and don't steal kegs!
« Last Edit: February 08, 2015, 07:22:33 am by majorvices »

S. cerevisiae

  • Guest
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #53 on: February 08, 2015, 12:02:10 pm »
I have had people come up to me and say "Hey, I bought one of your kegs!"

What was your response? 

Offline Thirsty_Monk

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2514
  • Eau Claire WI
    • Lazy Monk Brewing
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #54 on: February 08, 2015, 06:08:28 pm »
I also do not think my state regulate deposit amounts.
Na Zdravie

Lazy Monk Brewing
http://www.lazymonkbrewing.com

Offline majorvices

  • Global Moderator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 11342
  • Polka. If its too loud you're too young.
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #55 on: February 09, 2015, 01:52:10 am »
I have had people come up to me and say "Hey, I bought one of your kegs!"

What was your response?

Basically I said, "That's my keg and you need to bring it back" and after some discussion and explanation he did. Gave him some swag to cover his lost deposit. That was one guy in particular. There have been a few other occasions where I have tried to encourage them to return it but no idea if they did or not.

Offline pete b

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 4167
  • Barre, Ma
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #56 on: February 09, 2015, 01:53:26 pm »
It seems that the best thing everyone can do is tell people that the brewery actually is harmed by this. It seems most keg theft happens out of ignorance as Keith's story about the guy telling him he has one of his kegs demonstrates. I'm surprised that breweries don't put big orange stickers on the kegs that say something like "Not returning this keg is theft and costs X Brewey Y Dollars". I think for craft breweries where their kegs are bought and or re-sold to craft fans and homebrewers this would be effective. AB etc. might not get the same response.
Don't let the bastards cheer you up.

Offline micsager

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1179
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #57 on: February 09, 2015, 01:56:01 pm »
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.

Ethics and morals are not dependent on who you're stealing from.

+1 million.  Thanks Denny. 

Offline 69franx

  • Official Poobah of No Life. (I Got Ban Hammered by Drew)
  • *********
  • Posts: 3210
  • Bloatarian Brewing League
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #58 on: April 30, 2015, 11:54:57 am »
Bump for input,
     At work today, I found 2 old Hudepohl brewing Company half barrel kegs. They are left over from a company picnic at least 10 years ago. One is actually still about half full and pressurized. I also found a 20#(I think) tank of beer gas: labeled "compressed gas, N.O.S."
    So I have a few questions, as the brewery is operated by a different company now than when these were used at the party. I know there is a link in here for returning kegs, but at this point, is it worth it? Is it ethical to keep them? The second part also involves the question, They are metal, with rubberized tops and bottoms. Besides re-filling with beer, are they functional for anything around a home brewery? They have a metal American sanke head, and may just be rubber coated(and that is my guess) Can this rubber coating just be removed? I already have a 15 gallon boil kettle and use either a 48 or 70 qt cooler for batch sparging, so really no need for a keggle anyways. Also, any thoughts on the tank of gas? Is looks like on the other side of the label it says "Ultra mix" maybe. Can it be switched over to CO2 when I start a draft system?
     Any thoughts or suggestions anyone has would be most appreciated. Not looking to game the system, just looking for suggestions. Let me know what you think...
Frank L.
Fermenting: Nothing (ugh!)
Conditioning: Nothing (UGH!)
In keg: Nothing (Double UGH!)
In the works:  House IPA, Dark Mild, Ballantine Ale clone(still trying to work this one into the schedule)

Offline Slowbrew

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2859
  • The Slowly Losing IT Brewery in Urbandale, IA
Re: The ethics of keggles
« Reply #59 on: April 30, 2015, 12:08:34 pm »
Bump for input,
     At work today, I found 2 old Hudepohl brewing Company half barrel kegs. They are left over from a company picnic at least 10 years ago. One is actually still about half full and pressurized. I also found a 20#(I think) tank of beer gas: labeled "compressed gas, N.O.S."
    So I have a few questions, as the brewery is operated by a different company now than when these were used at the party. I know there is a link in here for returning kegs, but at this point, is it worth it? Is it ethical to keep them? The second part also involves the question, They are metal, with rubberized tops and bottoms. Besides re-filling with beer, are they functional for anything around a home brewery? They have a metal American sanke head, and may just be rubber coated(and that is my guess) Can this rubber coating just be removed? I already have a 15 gallon boil kettle and use either a 48 or 70 qt cooler for batch sparging, so really no need for a keggle anyways. Also, any thoughts on the tank of gas? Is looks like on the other side of the label it says "Ultra mix" maybe. Can it be switched over to CO2 when I start a draft system?
     Any thoughts or suggestions anyone has would be most appreciated. Not looking to game the system, just looking for suggestions. Let me know what you think...

The only thing I can tell you is that "compressed gas, N.O.S." only means that it is non-flammable.  It's probably CO2 but you can't tell from just that label.

As for the rest of your questions... I'll leave those to others because I'm not sure where "found" 15 year old kegs fall on the ethical scale.   ::)

Paul
Where the heck are we going?  And what's with this hand basket?