With the opening of Trader Joe's and Publix in West Knoxville, and Costco not far behind, some East Tennesseans are buzzing about some of those retailers' most popular products, which will not appear on the shelves in this state.
"It would just be one of those nice perks to have," said West Knoxville resident Sandy Lee Wood of wine in grocery stores. "South Carolina, Georgia, Florida all have it, and it's really convenient."
Tennessee law currently forbids wine sales in food stores, but several of Knoxville's newest businesses are known for those very products.
Trader Joe's carries the low-priced "Two-Buck Chuck" in many of its stores across the nation, but it will not show up in East Tennessee.
"In some states, we do have separate wine stores," said Aimee Pawelek, a Trader Joe's captain. "We're not able to do that here. We do sell lots of beer."
Meanwhile, Publix stores often have extensive wine sections, and the company offers an online wine guide and distributes "Grape" magazine. Costco also is famous for its liquor store.
"Five of the eight states that border Tennessee, and 35 of the 50 states provide wine sales in food stores," said Jarron Springer, president of the Tennessee Grocers and Convenience Store Association.
The organization is behind the "Red, White and Food" campaign aimed at changing state law to allow wine to be sold in grocery stores.
"The state is really losing out on revenue," Springer said. "Stores are building across the border instead of building in Tennessee because of this issues, and the state is losing out on revenue, and they're losing out on doing what the customers want and what the constituents want."
Springer is referring to the Costco store that opened just across the Tennessee border in north Georgia back in the fall of 2010. He says one of the main reasons was because of Tennessee's laws restricting wine sales in food stores.
Of course, not everyone is supportive of those wine sales.
Proposed legislation has stalled in the state legislature for years, and many package store owners are strongly opposed, saying the move would hurt their business and endanger jobs.
But Springer says each year the measure gets closer to passing, and having big-name retailers on board can help.
"We're glad to have them, and these are retailers that are committed to getting wine sales in Tennessee, as are all the other ones there in the Knoxville market," he said. "So, they're looking out for what the customers want, and they look forward to being able to sell wine in Tennessee."