A bill passed by the Virginia General Assembly this week raises the alcohol content limit on hard cider produced in Virginia. Currently the limit is 7 percent, but the bill would raise that to 10 percent.
Alexandria Delegate David Englin, the bill's sponsor, says Virginia apples naturally ferment at 10 percent alcohol content.
"What the 7 percent cap does is it discriminates against our homegrown Virginia apples," Englin says. "So Virginia cider producers want the opportunity to produce cider the traditional way that Thomas Jefferson and George Washington produced it, and to market it that way."
Englin says though hard cider is primarily produced in more rural parts of the state, constituents in his district have an interest in locally grown and locally made agricultural products -- Virginia hard cider is an example of that.
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