A Carroll County Times article (2018-05-28) reported that Carroll County is updating its zoning code to specifically address breweries, distilleries, and wineries. With the recent rise in popularity of craft alcoholic beverages and other agritourism activities, counties have struggled to find the balance between keeping an area in productive agriculture versus allowing some related and subordinate activities that can keep a farm alive financially.
The article indicated the new zoning code will provide direct guidance to farm breweries, wineries, and distilleries on what the County requires of their operations. The code defines allowed activities, use of retail space, and the percentage of finished alcohol that can be imported from outside the farm. The County worked with farmers and alcohol producers when developing the ordinance. From the article:
“This is a coming trend,” said [Carroll County Director of Land and Resource Management Tom] Devilbiss last week. Farm breweries, wineries and distilleries are “in a lot of places and we wanted to make sure it was covered. It’s for everyone’s benefit … so that everything they’re doing is legal and covered in our code. …
Commissioner Richard Weaver, R-District 2, a former farmer and agriculture teacher, said he also recognizes the trend is growing and said the changes will give farmers and county staff alike a much easier way to conduct their business.