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How Wine is Regulated by the Federal Government


If someone is thinking about entering the wine industry world, one should be familiar with how the federal government regulates this industry.  The wine industry, and the alcohol industry as a whole, is highly regulated by both the federal government and individual states.  This is because the government sees being a part of this industry as a privilege, not a right.  Since winemaking and being in the wine industry is a privilege, it can be revoked.  This post discusses the federal laws and agencies that control the wine industry.

On the Federal level, the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (“FAAA”) and the Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”) are the two bodies statutes that control wineries.  In broad terms, the FAAA is responsible for issuing the basic permit, labeling and advertising, and fair trade practices.  The IRC is responsible for the qualification of premises, production, and the payment of taxes.  These laws are administered by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (“TTB”).

The TTB was formed in 2003 pursuant to the Homeland Security Act (“HAS”) of 2002.  As the name implies, it serves to collect taxes, and also to protect the public.  As to protecting the public, the TBB enforces the FAAA, which ensures that only qualified people are engaging in the alcohol beverage industry.  Additionally, the TTB is responsible for enforcing laws regulating alcohol production, important, and distribution, wholesale businesses, tobacco manufacturing, importation, and operations, alcohol labeling and advertising and tobacco products advertising.

These are the ways in which the federal government regulates the wine industry.   Stay tuned for more information on regulation from the state and local level!  Rincker Law is available to assist different segments of the wine and vineyard industry.


"This blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. It is recommended that you speak to an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction before relying on the information in this blog."

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