Questions Asked by US Bulk Wine Producers

Q1 – Another winery is doing a custom crush for me, and will be producing and bottling my wine.  How do I get a label approval?

Federal regulations require that the bottling winery must submit the label for approval.  Even though the wine is produced and bottled for you and/or will be distributed exclusively (or not) by you, the bottler/importer is responsible for getting the label approval.

Q2- I operate a domestic winery and I am making wine from grapes or juice that I have purchased from another state or country.  What appellation of origin may I use?

This is a complicated question, and the answer (see 27 CFR §4.25(b)) depends on the particular circumstances. State or local laws and regulations may be more restrictive than Federal laws and regulations in some instances, and, to use an appellation, the wine must conform to the laws and regulations of the named appellation area.  (Please note that we use here certain states or regions only as examples to illustrate certain different circumstances.)  We advise that you confer with state and local authorities regarding their requirements before finalizing your COLA submission.  Remember that your wine, and the records that you keep, must adequately support any claims which are made on your label. The following situations serve as examples.  There are certainly more factual circumstances that might have a different outcome.

Situation 1:   I am making a wine with grapes or juice originating from a state that is contiguous to (that is,  touching)  my own state (e.g. when California grapes are used to produce  wine in Oregon).Suppose that I have purchased Napa Valley, California, grapes that I will produce into wine in Oregon.

The most specific appellation of origin eligible for use is the name of the contiguous state (California).  A viticultural area appellation of origin (e.g. Napa Valley) may NOT  be used because the wine was not fully finished within that state.

Situation 2:  The state from which the winemaking material originates is not contiguous to the state in which the wine is produced. For example, California grapes have been purchased to produce wine in New York.

The most specific appellation of origin eligible – for use is a country appellation, such as “American.”  Note that when a country is used as an appellation of origin a vintage date is NOT permissible for the wine.

Situation 3:   I am purchasing grapes or juice from another country.  An appellation of origin may NOT be used, as this wine is not eligible for such claims (see 27 CFR §4.25(b)(2)(ii)).  A vintage date or a varietal designation (e.g. Merlot) may not appear  on the wine,  as both items require an appellation of origin present on the label.  The wine may be labeled only with  a more general class or type statement, such as “Red Wine” or “White Wine.”

Q3 – May a proprietor of a bonded wine premises transfer bulk wine to a bonded wine premises, brewery, or distilled spirits plant?

Source: https://www.ttb.gov/wine/wine-faq.shtml

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What are the Federal requirements for “Custom Crush” clients and winemakers?

What is a “Custom Crush” arrangement and what are the Federal requirements for “Custom Crush” clients and winemakers?

In a typical custom crush arrangement, a grape grower or any person with winemaking materials (the “client”) enters into a contract with a bonded winery proprietor to have the grapes processed into wine. The client retains title to the grapes, and the wine is made to the client’s specifications. The finished wine is returned to the client for sale to other dealers, or the winery sometimes sells the wine on behalf of the client.

The custom crush client may be required to obtain a Federal Wholesaler’s Basic Permit from TTB. This permit allows the client to engage in the business of purchasing wine for resale at wholesale, in accordance with the Federal Alcohol Administration Act at 27 U.S.C. 203(c)(1) and 27 CFR 1.22. Although the client is specifically paying for the producer’s services, the client has purchased wine (within the broad meaning of the term) at the price set in the agreement. If the client engages in activities normally associated with wholesaling, such as setting the price for the wine, determining which dealers will be sold the wine, and controlling and paying for advertising of the product, the client must have a wholesaler’s basic permit. If, however, the client merely receives the proceeds from the sale by the winery of the resulting wine, a permit would not be required.

The custom crush client who engages in the business of selling wine is liable for Registration as a Liquor Dealer.  The holder of a federal permit is automatically registered to sell at the address shown on the permit.  If selling at retail at a location where you do not hold a valid producer, blender, wholesaler or importer permit, the retailer must register that location by filing TTB F 5630.5(d) There is no cost for registration.

Bonded winery proprietors must ensure that the receipt of winemaking materials and the ensuing activities associated with the production of custom crush wine is properly recorded. TTB reminds the industry that wine produced for custom crush clients carries the same regulatory requirements for recordkeeping, reporting, labeling and taxation as wine made for the winery itself.

Manufacturing partner

The bottling winery is responsible for obtaining an appropriate Certificate of Label Approval, and the wine premises which removes the wine from bond is responsible for payment of Federal excise tax at the rate appropriate for the producing winery. For the purposes of determining eligibility for the Small Domestic Producer’s Credit, all wine produced for clients must be included in the production and removal calculations (see 27 CFR 24.278-9).

Source: https://www.ttb.gov/wine/wine-faq.shtml

Only 10 Spots are left to become an Exhibitor at the 2017 International Bulk Wine and Spirits ShowRegister Now and Join the show as an Exhibitor.