Buying Cooperatives by Distributors – In a recent advisory opinion, the PLCB, Office of Chief Counsel confirmed that beer distributors may form “buying cooperatives” with other beer distributors in order to receive the benefit of “special pricing” being offered by importing distributors to higher volume purchasers. The PLCB recognized there is nothing in the Liquor Code or regulations that would preclude distributor licensees from working together to form a buying cooperative when purchasing from an importing distributor; however, the following conditions must be satisfied when engaging in this practice:  (i) any applicable territorial agreements must be honored, (ii) all sales would need to be made by the importing distributor directly to each respective distributor licensee (and not from one distributor to the others), and (iii) no unlawful pecuniary interest can be conveyed between the licensees.  In the same advisory opinion, the PLCB reiterated its historical position that manufacturers, importing distributors, and distributors are not required to offer price reductions to all classes of customers to whom they sell.  Thus, an importing distributor may offer a price reduction to one distributor licensee or a group of distributor licensees without offering the same or similar reduction to other distributor licensees.