In general, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) has been working to eliminate some of the regulatory hoops that brewery businesses have to jump through in order to operate.
Their newest proposal may give both existing breweries and those looking to start their brand some welcome breaks.
What are the suggested changes?
If adopted, the suggested updates would amend the qualification requirements for Brewer’s Notices and eliminate some of the mandatory reporting existing breweries have to do when they make changes. For example:
- The requirements for descriptions of the brewery premises would be more narrowly construed.
- Brewers would no longer be required to maintain a distinct and separate “tavern” area if they want to sell beer on-site (allowing them to generally serve their products to customers anywhere on the premises).
- Brewers could begin using new trade names merely by notifying TTB, instead of amending their Brewer’s Notice.
- Brewers would be permitted to maintain their records at remote locations (instead of the permitted premises) without TTB’s advance approval.
- Brewers with multiple locations would only need one bond, instead of separate ones for each of their operations.
- In certain situations, breweries could reduce the frequency of their required physical inventories.
- The 12-day waiting period breweries must observe before destroying tax-paid beer off-site would be eliminated.
- Brewers would be allowed 60 days to report certain changes in their operations (instead of the current 30-day window).
Ultimately, these proposed changes would make life easier for many craft breweries and their operators, who already have a lot of rules to comply with and navigate. Even so, it’s wise to have experienced assistance to keep up with the regulatory changes to your brewery.