Tennessee first state to require stores to card all beer buyers

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Starting tomorrow, everyone will be required to show identification before buying beer in Tennessee stores -- no matter how old the buyer appears.

Tennessee is the first state to make universal carding mandatory, says the National Alcohol Beverage Control Association.

But the new law does not apply to beer sales in bars and restaurants, and it does not cover wine and liquor, which have a higher alcohol content.

Supporters say it keeps grocery store and convenience store clerks from having to guess a person's age.

Democratic Governor Phil Bredesen said it's a good way to address the problems of underage drinking.

Rich Foge, executive director of the Tennessee Malt Beverage Association, said he expects there might be some initial resistance from the beer-buying public.

But once people live with it for a month or two, it will become more of a routine, he said.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) AP-NY-06-30-07 1313EDT