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Schumer seeks 'hard cider act' to boost sales

ALBANY (AP) -- Two U.S. senators are giving hard cider a hard sell.

Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York and Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont are pushing a hard cider act in Washington that would lower the tax on the alcoholic apple drink from the high level wine is taxed. The bill would update the definition of hard cider to get the lower tax.

Schumer says the change would provide a lucrative source of income for small apple-growing operations. He says they face a difficult crop to grow and fickle weather.

The bill is progressing in the Senate and has a companion bill in the House.

New York is second in apple production the country after Washington state. New York harvests nearly 30 million bushels annually from over 650 farms.

AP-WF-09-21-13 1247GMT
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