New Bill Would Ensure All Pints of Beer Are Really 16-Ounces

Michigan pols become the latest to advocate for so-called "honest pints"

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Two Michigan representatives are raising their glasses to a bill that would make it an “offense” to serve or advertise a pint that contains fewer than 16 ounces of beer, The Detroit Free-Press reports.

The proposal, sponsored by Rep. David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights) and Rep. Brandon Dillon (D-Grand Rapids), would amend the state Liquor Control Act to ensure customers are getting the most bang for their buck, while local bar owners argued that they don’t want to replace all of their pint-style glasses, many of which come in 12-ounce or “thick-bottomed” 14-ounce sizes.

The Michigan proposal is just the latest in the movement for state-regulated pint standards, nicknamed “honest pints.” For context, the approximately 20-ounce “Imperial Pint” is the government-regulated standard in the U.K., and those glasses have been specially marked, the Wall Street Journal reported. Stateside, Oregon beer blogger Jeff Alworth has been one of the major advocates, co-founding the “Honest Pint Project” in 2007, where he has catalogued pubs nationwide that serve fuller pints on his website and has lobbied the Oregon state legislature to pass 16-ounce standards — though the bill did fail to pass in the state senate.

The amount of head or foam may reduce the amount of beer in glasses. Last month, right before the start of Oktoberfest in Munich, tent officials cautioned workers to avoid underserving revelers, after The Local reported that pours at last year’s festival contained too much head, and many Steins had 0.8 liters of beer instead of a full liter.

In general, however, bartenders say so-called “cheater pints” make for bitter customers. As Frank Martucci of the United States Bartenders’ Guild told Marketwatch in July, “What we strive for is to get guests back in the door again.”

We’ll drink to that.

15 comments
Alworth
Alworth

A very minor correction.  While I did give testimony to the Oregon legislature when they considered a similar bill in 2009, I didn't introduce the bill or lobby for it.  That credit goes to House representative Jules Bailey of Portland. 

porkx
porkx

how is this not already illegal, don't most localities have a weights and measures bureau that polices stuff like this?

kkingbrian
kkingbrian

Meanwhile, 50,000 drunks are able to drive away from NFL games free and clear from all law enforcement agencies every Sunday.

Janette
Janette

Well it's about time, by God. I just worry enlessly about how bartenders rob those precious last drops from our nation's beer drunks every time they under pour those beers. I've always considered this a topic that is so much more important than America's countless starving children and clearly a bigger crisis than its failing education system. I hope the people of Michigan realize how fortunate they are to have Rep. David Knezek and Rep. Brandon Dillon and their keen ability to separate issues that are truly paramount from those like that mundane education system one. Time well spent, boys.

ScottLong
ScottLong

what a total waste of taxpayer money

BradHart
BradHart

If you don't want to replace your 12 ounce pint glasses replace your menus and call them 12 ounce beers instead of pints.

BradHart
BradHart

@porkx Why are foot long subs not guaranteed to be footlongs?

sigmaAG
sigmaAG

@Janette You realize congress can pass more than one bill at a time, right?

moose2823
moose2823

@Janette America's children aren't starving.  Last I checked, this country had an obesity problem, school lunches were subsidized for the poor, and there were food banks in every city larger than 5k ppl....

allenwoll
allenwoll

@Janette  -- Then there are the 15-oz cans in the grocery that replaced 16-oz cans several years ago.

What is next -- 10-count dozens ? ? 

Honest measure is fundamental to a WORKING Democracy (or Republic) . DIS-honest measure is fundamental to our present Corporatocracy ! ! . Thank your neighborhood CON -- your hood-HOOD !  


sigmaAG
sigmaAG

@ScottLong Yeah, I'm sure the cost breakdown for the amount of time spent debating this issue on the floor is significant. Wait, no, it probably isn't. 

porkx
porkx

Well, if you don't mind 12oz "pints" at the bar then i guess you wouldn't mind 96oz "gallons" at the gas station.

StevenCabourne
StevenCabourne

@ScottLong I agree that this is a waste of taxpayer money but if we had more honesty in business we would not need more regulations.  It does irk me when there is 1.5" of head on my beer.  I take it out of the tip or just don't go back.

Janette
Janette

Oh sorry, in America it's called suffering from 'food insecurity' (cause, you know, we're so pc) and 17,000,000 of them do it daily.