Gov. Phil Scott ordered the state liquor and lottery commissioner on Monday, Feb. 28, to remove all Russian-owned products from the shelves of state agent stores.
“Today I directed the Commissioner of Liquor and Lottery to remove Russian-owned products from state agent store shelves and cease purchasing new stock from Russian-owned distilleries until further notice,” he posted on Twitter.
Scott issued the order in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. New Hampshire has also suspended all sales of Russian liquor from its state-run stores.
“There are few things individual states can do alone, but I am heartened by the overwhelming and united response from the Free World in support of the people of Ukraine,” Scott wrote, adding: “Vermonters are inspired by the bravery, courage, and sacrifice of those who seek nothing more than the freedom to determine their own futures. The Ukrainian people are fighting for the same values we believe in, and we must come together to support them.”
Scott also ordered the suspension of purchases from Russian-owned distilleries.
Russia is Vermont’s 11th biggest importer, an amount that has increased by 23% from 2019-20, according to federal data.
The governor said he will issue an executive order later this week detailing further action and state sanctions Vermont will pursue to respond to what in a statement he called “the illegal and heinous Putin invasion of Ukraine.”