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Nov 1, 2013 11:24 AM

Why doesn't Trader Joes' in NJ(at least ones in Bergen) don't carry alocoholic beverages?

Oh why, why??

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  1. bad grammar in the title line..but anyway...

    1. Corporations are limited to two retail distribution licenses in the state. They didn't pick Bergen County. Their choice.

      8 Replies
      1. re: Sdenred

        Yup. I think the one in Princeton sells alcohol..?

        1. re: ohmyyum

          Princeton and Westfield sell alcohol... and they are both over an hour from the Jersey Shore. We visit one or the other every few months and stock up on wine.

          1. re: Njchicaa

            I have family in Princeton but Westwood (in Bergen county) is definitely the closest for me when I'm home.
            I have wine and beer everyday in my store in NC, though!

        2. re: Sdenred

          crap, they should have picked Bergen county.

          1. re: Sdenred

            That's only partially true. Although the parent corporation may be Trader Joe's in this instance....each individual store is most likely a separate and individually registered corporation....for tax and liability issues. There are many National Chains in the state that have multiple locations and licenses. A single corporation or individual can only own two licenses.

            The most likely culprit is it may not fit their business model for their the stores without licenses....or there were none available to be purchased in the locations which have stores.

            1. re: fourunder

              Different corporations or entities with similar ownership will not bypass the 2 license limit.


              Unless a person held an interest in more than two retail licenses (except plenary retail transit licenses) prior
              to August 3, 1962, a person may not have any interest in more than a total of two retail licenses. There are
              some exceptions which permit the acquiring of more than two licenses if such licenses are retail
              consumption licenses and are used for a hotel of at least 50 sleeping rooms, a restaurant, a bowling facility
              of 20 lanes or more or at an international airport. Where this exception applies, except for hotels, no
              package goods can be sold. (N.J.S.A. 33:1-12.31 to 12.37.) (See “Local Control” and “Package Goods
              Sales by Retail Consumption Licensees.”)

              Being a member of a club which holds a Club License or holding less than 10 percent or less of the stock of
              a publicly-traded corporation which owns a retail license does not constitute an interest for the purpose of
              this two-license limitation.

              Taken from the NJ Alcoholic Beverage Control Handbook


              1. re: wizard2

                Different corporations or entities with similar ownership will not bypass the 2 license limit

                some exceptions...

                I worked for a National Chain restaurant back in the 80s-90's that had 10 stores in New Jersey...all corporate stores. There are currently many franchisees that have different territories within the state that also have multiple locations each, or private equity ownership more commonly known as Restaurant Groups that have multiple locations. Doherty Enterprises is on that comes to mind with 45+ licenses. Some Costco Wholesale Clubs have outside independent operators within their stores(Western Beverage?)

                1. re: fourunder

                  Restaurants are not limited to 2 liquor licenses.

          2. The original comment has been removed
            1. Honestly, you aren't missing much. There are good wine values around everywhere.

              2 Replies
              1. re: jmoryl

                That is true except if TJ carried wine and beer, it will be true one stop shopping for me.

                1. re: jmoryl

                  There is a Costco-run liquor store in the Wayne, NJ location.

                2. thank the Puritans. why are NYC liquor sales so weird, why are Philly's? why are DC's? the laws are nonsense pretty much everywhere from the near South to New England, but they stay on the books...