You can’t make this stuff up

Chip Christianson owns J. Barleycorn’s liquor store and is listed as president of Tennessee Wine & Spirits Retailers Association. Here’s what he told a reporter from WKRN when interviewed about Red White and Food earlier this month:

“Citizens didn’t start this movement. Very high paid [public relations] firms by large grocery chains started this movement,” Christianson said.

Christianson is right on one point. The Tennessee Grocers and Convenience Store Association is using not one but two PR firms for the Red White and Food campaign. He neglected to mention that his organization provided support to the opposing PR and direct mail campaign that ran afoul with a legislator last session.

Christianson completely misses the boat on the impact of PR. Contrary to West Wing depictions, PR cannot make people believe anything they don’t want to believe. What PR can do is create a platform for people who have a belief to support a cause. People will support the cause matters to them and they truly believe they can have an impact.

Judging from our success so far, Red White and Food is on to something.

Tennesseans  have joined the campaign in droves (we have about 3,500 members now, as many as 5x our opponents). They contacted legislators by the hundreds. They have commented favorably to almost every news story about the issue. They made wine in retail food stores one of the top issues of the past legislative session and will make it one the top issues at this session.

Tennessee consumers truly started and fueled Red White and Food. Their frustration is our inspiration. Red White and Food is a platform for them to voice and act on that frustration. Can you hear them now?


3 Responses to “You can’t make this stuff up”

  1. R. Michel Says:

    I am startled that the grocers association is pushing so hard to give away thousands and thousands of local jobs to pursue gaining money. This legislation is only about one thing and that is being ablt to make more profit on a bottle of wine than the can on any food Item in a store. If you look at the States around us who offer wine in stores the have a CRAP selection. We have been blessed with wine and Liquor stores who bring us things in just because certain clients like them. Do you honestly think you are going to be able to find a nice wine to take to neighbors dinner at COSTCO? REally have we not given Sam’s, Costco, Walmart etc enought of our buying power? THis is a Money grubbing effort that they are marketing to the general public as convenience. I hope That people would rather be inconvenienced and keep local friends and neighbors in their jobs!!!!!

    • redwhiteandfood Says:

      Thanks for your comments. You just explained why liquor stores will continue to do well and employee thousands of Tennesseans even if this legislation passes. It’s because food stores will carry a very limited selection that won’t satisfy everyone — and, food stores will not have liquor. Liquor stores, who have a 70-year head start building relationships with clients, will continue to rule the market for nice wines and advice for consumers.

  2. Henry P. III (Chip) Equity Says:

    I want to die peacefully, in my sleep, like my grandfather, not screaming, terrified, like his passengers.

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