Well Crafted NC

Pop The Cap

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Pop The Cap: North Carolinians for Specialty Beer was a movement begun in 2003 by 35 people with the expressed goal of getting a bill on the 2005 NCGA legislative calendar that would raise the alcohol by volume (ABV) cap in North Carolina from 6%. This percentage had been in place since the end of Prohibition in 1935 when mill owners lobbied the legislature, fearing their employees wouldn’t show up for work on Mondays. On August 13, 2005 Governor Mike Easley signed HB 392 into law, and the ABV cap was increased from 6 to 15 percent. A brief overview of the Pop The Cap movement.

Oral history interview with Julie Johnson (2019)

I had an idea of what didn't work, and I laid it out, and I basically said, "So," I didn't quite say who's with me, but, "Is this the year we're going to modernize North Carolina beer laws?" And then I hit send, and they printed it. And then people started emailing. "Okay, what are you gonna do about it?"

Julie Johnson is the former co-owner and editor of All About Beer magazine; board member, Pop The Cap Movement

View the Julie Johnson oral history interview.

Oral history interview with Sean Lilly Wilson (2018)

We knew what the goal was, we just had no idea how to do it.... We literally thought that maybe a petition would work? In retrospect it's so laughably naive. We had plenty of 'bless your heart' moments in our early days as we tried to get this thing going.

Sean Lilly Wilson is the Founder and Chief Executive Optimist at Fullsteam Brewery; President, Pop The Cap Movement

View the Sean Lilly Wilson oral history interview.

Pop The Cap: North Carolinians for Specialty Beer Industry Archive

Marketing and other materials related to the Pop The Cap movement and legislative lobbying initiatives. You may also view the Pop The Cap web site (via the Internet Archive).

View the Pop The Cap Industry Archive