You hardly need to be reminded that the brewing industry is heavily regulated, especially at the state level. Staff of the Brewers Association, the craft brewers’ industry trade group, have been busy sorting out state laws in several key areas and have summarized them on the BA’s website. The summaries include these six areas:
- Barrel cap laws, which restrict larger breweries’ ability to sell beer on-premises.
- Franchise laws, which spell out the circumstances under which a brewery may terminate its contractual relationship with a wholesaler.
- Growler laws, which specify who (breweries, brewpubs, and retailers) are allowed to fill growlers.
- Self-distribution laws, which provide whether a brewery may sell directly to retailers and, if so, how many barrels it may self-distribute.
- State excise tax rates.
- Laws specifying whether a brewery sell beer at retail and/or offer samples.
The Brewers Association cautions that its information should not be considered the final word on the law. If you notice something that needs to be updated (this being an odd-numbered year, state legislatures are hard at work), the BA would like to hear about it, and it has provided a feedback form.