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Quarterly Roundup: Beverage alcohol news you need to know from Q3 2021

Recent developments in the beverage alcohol industry include new state regulations and evolving business models. Read on for highlights from Q3 2021.

 

Cap it off. Now that Ohio has eliminated its production cap on direct-to-consumer (DTC) sales, New Jersey is the only state still limiting DTC wine sales for larger producers. Out-of-state wineries producing more than 250,000 gallons of wine per year cannot ship directly to consumers in the Garden State, though a bill languishing in the New Jersey Legislature could change that if enacted by the end of the year.

  

Close the door behind you. Breweries, distilleries, and retailers used to be able to ship beverage alcohol directly to consumers in Nevada. Not anymore: Nevada now prohibits both in-state and out-of-state breweries, distilleries, and retailers from making DTC sales.

 

For delivery or pick up? Allowing restaurants and bars to sell cocktails to go during COVID-19 lockdowns represented an enormous change for states. Some states have made these new policies permanent. Others will likely allow temporary measures to expire.

 

I’ll take a Manhattan. DoorDash has jumped into the alcohol delivery market and now offers 30,000 SKUs across the country: wine, beer, and spirits from convenience stores, grocery stores, and retailers as well as handcrafted cocktails from restaurants. Businesses that sell alcohol through the third-party providers (TTP) will likely see profits grow, while states will likely feel increased pressure to regulate rapidly evolving TPP practices.

 

Patience. Both in-state and out-of-state wineries can now ship directly to consumers in Alabama, which is an exciting development for wine producers. Yet because the Alabama Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board is still finalizing the new application process, some wineries are waiting to apply until they know exactly what they’ll need to do.

 

Simplification can be complicated. Texas has cut the number of beverage alcohol seller licenses and permits from 75 to 37, changed the fee structure, and launched a new Alcohol Industry Management System (AIMS). All good things. Still, adapting to these changes will complicate compliance for a spell.

 

Yes, please. Wineries can ship directly to consumers in Delaware today, but only if a Delawarean places the order in person, at the winery. The limitations of this on-site requirement became glaringly apparent during COVID-19 lockdowns, when many wineries were closed to in-person visits and people were discouraged from traveling anywhere at all. Now Delaware is looking to eliminate its on-site requirement and open the state to DTC wine shipments.

 

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The beverage alcohol experts at Avalara stay on top of changing legislative updates and other industry news. Be sure to bookmark our blog to stay up-to-date. 

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