BevAlc Roundup | Agencies Extend Trade Practice Enforcement, How Could a Great 2018 Harvest Affect Prices Ahead, and What’s in a Bubbly Wine?

Daniel Kostrzewa | December 27, 2018

As 2018 comes to a close, we at ShipCompliant by Sovos want to extend our deepest appreciation to all our clients, partners, and regular readers. We know it is such a privilege for us to be able to work in this industry and interact with so many fantastic people. We have very high hopes for what 2019 will bring, and all the many more years in the future when we can continue to support bringing your vision to fruition.

For this week’s Roundup, we look at a notice from California announces its plan to tax online orders — which has implications for the beverage alcohol industry as online sales expands; we then look at an announcement from the White House regarding the removal of certain tax exemptions for importers and exporters of beverage alcohol (all amid ongoing threats of government shutdown), then Brewers Association reveals a new definition for craft beer, and why innovation and availability brings good tidings for trying new wines in 2019.

In case you missed our End of Year Virtual Seminar, read our recap, which also has a link to the entire presentation, which you can watch at your leisure.

Happy New Years to everyone, and here’s to a great 2019!

Stay up to date with the latest trends in the DtC wine market with the Sovos/Wines & Vines 2018 DtC Report. Make sure to download your copy here, and stay tuned for the 2019 Report, set to be released in late January.


Regulatory News and Discussions

TTB Newsletter | This week’s top news includes a reminder to include who you are representing when you comment on TTB rulemaking, what’s new in the latest versions of COLAs Online and Formulas Online, registration is now open for our next Formulas Online webinar, and publication of four rulemaking documents related to American viticultural areas. TTB

Trump Administration Blocks Tax Breaks for Alcohol Companies | The Trump Administration finalized a regulation Monday that limits the ability of U.S. wineries and global alcohol companies to reduce their import taxes. Fortune

California Announces Intent to Tax eCommerce | In a news release published on December 11, the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration formally announced their intent to join 30+ other U.S. states in the taxation of remote commerce. Sovos

Trade-Enforcement Agencies Are Ramping Up Their Wine-Sales Investigations | The Washington D.C.-based Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) has been ramping up its investigations into legal infractions that break the Tied House Rules thanks to a $5 million infusion of government investment last year. Forbes

Why Santa Can’t Send You Christmas Spirit | In a world where consumer can get anything they want, however they want, the spirits industry is at a real disadvantage. Rabobank

Wine Institute Discusses Top Issues With California Legislators | The future of the wine excise tax reform approved late 2017, tariffs on US wine exports, and Brexit are among the issues on the Wine Institute’s to-do list, according to a recent hearing focusing on the wine industry before state legislators.

A High Court Ruling on Wine Retailer Interstate Commerce Is Ever so Near | It’s been more than a dozen years since the Supreme Court ruled against restricting out-of-state wineries from interstate shipping direct to consumers. That ruling is now being tested by out-of-state retailers seeking the same access. Forbes


Industry Updates: Market Conditions and Developments

Brewers Association Board Agrees to Revise “Craft Brewer” Definition, Form PAC | Citing a need to remain flexible at a time when a growing number of craft breweries are experimenting with non-traditional beer offerings, the Brewers Association (BA) today announced that it has once again revised its “craft brewer” definition. Brewbound

California North Coast Wine Grape Harvest in 2018 Too Much of a Good Thing? | The good news for the 2018 North Coast wine grape harvest is it produced fruit that a number of winemakers are praising for quality, but the not so great news is it may have provided too much of a good thing. North Bay Business Journal

Key 2018 Wine Trends — Gender and the Wine Industry | At the top of the list of issues driving the evolution of the wine industry is the momentum driving all sectors of the industry to examine the role of women in wine, both currently and historically. Fermentation

9 Beer and Spirits Predictions For 2019 | Instead of ushering in profound advancements or unforeseen windfalls, Forbes’ Tara Nurin believes next year will prove unremarkable. Forbes



Why 2019 Is the Year of the Curious Wine Drinker | The discovery category in wine is growing, and that’s a tremendous boon for the curious wine drinker. Forbes

Busting Terroir Myths: The Science of Soil and Wine Taste | Professor Alex Maltman questions the new orthodoxy that vineyard geology is of overriding importance to a wine’s character, and highlights some factors that may have been overlooked when it comes to understanding wine terroir in the glass. Decanter

The Science of Bubbles in Wine | Examining the effervescence in sparkling wine and its influence on mouthfeel, flavor, and aroma. SevenFifty Daily

How Good Is Canned Wine? | There are a number of advantages to canned wine, and it is currently enjoying increasing popularity in the United States, where it is seeing healthy sales. Decanter

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