"Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo might seem like an unlikely person to be pushing a bill to cut federal taxes on small beer-makers: A member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he abstains from alcohol.
But Crapo's effort, with senators from Oregon, Massachusetts and Maine, illustrates the deep bond between Idaho Mormons and the beer industry.
Mormon farmers raise barley for Budweiser and Negra Modelo beers, and last year, Mormons in the Idaho Legislature helped kill a plan to raise beer and wine taxes to fund drug treatment, fearing it could hurt farmers."
The article also says:
"Idaho's Mormon barley farmers acknowledge an ambiguity in what they grow.
"I've often wondered about the correctness of doing it," said Scott Brown, president of the Idaho Grain Producers Association and a Mormon who grows barley on 5,000 acres near Soda Springs. "But somebody is going to grow it, whether members of the LDS church do.""
You could say the same thing about selling cocaine. The article also says:
"Coors has bought barley from Idaho's Mormon growers for going on four decades."and
"With the brewers offering good prices, the crop just makes sense, said Kelly Olson, Idaho Barley Commission administrator.
"I know of some LDS growers who won't raise malt barley, because they know it's ultimately destined for malt brewers," she said. "But by and large, most farmers make planting decisions based on economics.""
"Clark Hamilton, a Mormon farmer originally from Utah, was harvesting 3,000 acres of barley near Ririe last week. The golden, rice-sized cereal grain was destined for companies that make Natural Light and Corona beers. He's heard the question before.
"People will look at me and say, 'You're a Mormon, why do you grow barley?' " he said. "I just don't have a problem with it. I don't think people who drink beer are bad.""
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