U.S. News


FAA Shoots Down Beer Drone Delivery Service

A brewing companies beer drone delivery service for ice fishers has been forced to stop after the FAA said it broke regulations.
Posted at 10:35 PM, Feb 01, 2014

​It’s winter, it’s cold, you’re out on a frozen lake ice fishing and you want a beer. And not just any beer, but one delivered by a drone. Lakemaid Beer thought this was a good idea, but the FAA told them otherwise.

After a YouTube video depicting the beer drone delivery service in action went viral, the brewing company was told by the FAA that they could no longer operate with drones. (Via Lakemaid Beer)

Jack Supple, Lakemaid’s managing partner, told NPR that the FAA reached out to him to let him know that the delivery service broke four, possibly five, regulations. Supple was planning on eventually using unmanned drones that flew based off a set of coordinates.

In an interview with ABC, FAA spokesman Les Dorr defended the decision saying that “the FAA’s prime directive is safety” and that while they’re looking into regulations for drones, “commercial operations of unmanned aircraft is not allowed.”

Don’t count on Lakemaid letting their plan sink, though.

With the slogan, “Drop Beer, Not Bombs!”, Lakemaid has gone to social media to stir up support to get the FAA’s ban lifted. The extra publicity probably doesn’t hurt business either. (Via Facebook / Lakemaid Beer)

Support has even spread to the White House’s petition website, where folks are asking the President to force the FAA to give “airworthiness certificates” to beer drones. (Via The White House)

If this scenario reminds you of anything, it’s probably because Amazon made a similar announcement back in December with their proposed drone delivery system, "Prime Air." (Via Amazon)

Supple told the Fort Mill Times that Lakemaid would be happy to share their research with Amazon. The FAA is expected to reform current regulations for commercial drone use by 2015.