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      Single-bottle beer sales endorsed by Mo. Senate

      Missouri retailers could start selling beer by the bottle under legislation given initial approval in the state Senate. State law currently prohibits stores from selling beer in packages that contain fewer than three bottles. The bill by Republican Sen. Eric Schmitt, of Glendale, would allow the sale of a single bottles, cans or pouches of beer. Senators gave the bill preliminary approval Monday. A second vote is needed to send it to the House. If the measure is passed by both chambers and signed by the governor, single-serving beer sales could start in stores in 2015. Schmitt described the legislation as promoting freedom and liberty. Democratic Sen. Jolie Justus, of Kansas City, said it's a neat way to help a lot of small businesses.