Small brewers in California currently enjoy more privileges than any other state in the country. CCBA advocacy at the state Capitol is focused on protecting and preserving these privileges. Without the CCBA’s representation breweries could be facing strict franchise laws, self-distribution would not exist, there would be limitations on brewpubs, and tasting rooms would not be allowed.
The CCBA provides a strong and united voice representing the interests of all of California’s craft breweries at the state Capitol by protecting these privileges and many others.
2016 Bills That Became Law
AB 1322 (Daly) – Barbershop/Salon Bill
- Allows a beauty salon or barbershop licensed by the Department of Consumer Affairs (Board of Barbering and Cosmetology) to serve up to 12 ounces of beer or 6 ounces of wine to a customer without an alcoholic beverage license or permit. There can be no additional charge or fee for the alcoholic beverages. Businesses could serve up to 10 pm daily.
AB 1554 (Irwin) & Senate Bill 819 (Huff) – Powdered Alcohol
- Bans powdered alcohol in California. Assembly Bill 1554 prohibits the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) from issuing a license to make, distribute or sell powdered alcohol. Senate Bill 819 requires ABC to suspend or revoke the license of any business that makes, distributes or offers powdered alcohol for sale. Any individual who sells, possesses, buys, distributes or makes powdered alcohol is guilty of an infraction and could face a fine up to $500.
AB 2172 (Jones) – Homebrew Club Meetings
- Permits individuals to bring beer they made at home into an ABC licensed club, restaurant or bar, brewpub, beer or small beer manufacturer premises but only in connection with a home brewers club meeting or home brewed beer competition. Club members may also exchange and consume home brewed beer at a club meeting or competition. Patrons who are not club members shall not consume any home brewed beer.
AB 2913 (Assembly Committee) – Retail Sponsors
- Clarifies existing law and allows a licensee to sponsor or participate in an event conducted by, and for the benefit of, a nonprofit corporation in which retail and non-retail licensees are sponsors.
2015 CCBA Sponsored Bills
AB 776 (Cooper) Expanded Premise/Retail Sponsor of Special Event/Retailer Re-Sale
- Authorizes a beer manufacturer to apply to the ABC for a brewery event permit, which allows the beer manufacturer to temporary expand the licensed brewery premise for special events. Permit may be obtained up to four times a year. Property used for this purpose must be contiguous to the licensed premise (such as a parking lot) and must be under the control of the beer manufacturer.
- Authorizes beer manufacturers and licensed retailers to participate together in sponsoring and promoting non-profit special events.
- Clarifies that licensed retailers may not purchase products from a brewery and then re-sell at the retail license without proper price posting by the brewer.
AB 780 (Das Willams) Listing of Retail Locations
- Authorizes a beer manufacturer to list where their brands are available at retail. The beer manufacturer may provide, in direct communication with consumers, the name, location, contact info, web site address and social media contact as long as two or more licensed retailers are listed. The beer manufacturer or agent no longer is restricted to providing this information “in direct response to an inquiry.”` No promotion of the retailer or laudatory comments are allowed.
AB 774 (Levine) Sampling at Farmers Markets
- Authorizes a beer manufacturer to provide samples of beer (up to 8 ounces per person) when conducting sales at a farmers market.
AB 893 (Stone) Brand Registration
- Eliminates the requirement by the ABC to receive label “approval” from the Department prior to selling any beer brand. Requires a beer manufacturer to register the brand with the ABC prior to sale.
- Authorizes the listing of more than one beer manufacturer on a beer label (for collaboration beers). The actual manufacturer of the beer will be responsible for brand registration.
SB 796 (Hall) Retail Privileges for Type 01/23
- Clarifies that both a Type 23 and Type 01 beer manufacturer can exercise retail privileges at no more than six on-premise licensed retail locations. Retail privileges on the beer manufacturer’s license remain unchanged. There is no limit to the number of beer manufacturer’s licenses.
The CCBA was actively engaged in many legislative bills that affected the alcohol beverage industry in 2014.
Below is a summary of the most important bills. Click here for more details on these bills, including background information.
AB 2004 (Chesbro)
Authorizes a beer manufacturer to sell packaged beer at a farmers market (with restrictions). Allows for wine and beer from other sources to be served at a private event held on the premises of a beer manufacturer.
AB 2203 (Chesbro)
This bill makes it illegal for any person to obliterate, mutilate or mark out the manufacturers name on a metal keg without the written consent of the manufacturer.
AB 2609 (Nestande)
This bill requires homebrew served at a special event to be confined “within a clearly identified area including… a physical barrier with a monitored point of entry.” The bill also allows nonprofit organizations that promote home brewing, to sell beer at fundraising events.
AB 2010 (Gray)
Would impose a maximum of 6 duplicate licenses with a retail privilege, up to 2 of which are allowed to have a bona fide eating establishment.
AB 1928 (Bocanegra)
Prohibits a licensed retailer from accepting or redeeming any type of coupon that is funded or furnished by a beer manufacturer or wholesaler.
AB 1989 (Chesbro)
Allow a student, regardless of age, enrolled in a qualified academic institution to taste an alcoholic beverage, for educational purposes, as part of an established degree program in enology or brewing.
Governor Brown Signs AB 647 into Law!
AB 647 (Chesbro) makes three distinct changes to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Business & Professions (B&P) code.
The first is related to the labeling of growlers. It is a small but important change. For more detail about growlers visit the CCBA Growler Clarification here. The second change that AB 647 makes is in relation to the definition of beer manufacturing. Lastly, AB 647 addresses a technicality in the statute that did not allow a beer manufacturer to bring samples of their products to an industry trade association meeting. An amendment was made to the code to allow this in the very limited situation when a bona fide beer industry trade association is holding a private meeting on the premises of a licensed beer manufacturer.
The details of the three amendments to the code created by AB 647 are as follows:
- The CCBA supports current labeling law that requires a brewery to “obscure” information from another brewery on a container before refilling and selling it. We believe it is important that when a consumer takes home a container of beer that the container (growler, bottle or keg) be accurately labeled with the name of the brewery and the beer inside the container. In some cases, breweries were simply putting a growler into a brown paper bag to “obscure” the previous label and then putting their label on the bag to meet the current requirements. When the consumer walked out the door, they would often take the growler out of the bag, and the growler was then improperly labeled. The growler was labeled as being from Brewery A, but had beer in it from Brewery B. If you were Brewery A, you now had your growler with your name on it with beer in it from another brewery. The ABC had no way to enforce this under current statute. AB 647 adds simple language to B&P code section 25200(c), which states that the previous label must be completely obscured in a manner “not readily removable by the consumer….” Additionally, some breweries were obscuring the name of the previous brewery but not the logo or text from the previous brewery. AB 647 adds that “any information concerning any beer previously packaged in the container, including the information regarding the manufacturer and bottler of such beer, or any associated trademarks must be removed, or completely obscured.” Please read the CCBA Growler Clarification for complete details and best practices on growler refills.
- AB 647 also amends the definition of beer manufacturer in a way that protects the authenticity of our industry. In the recent past, there have been type 23 licenses issued to breweries that do not actually brew any beer. They were taking advantage of the many privileges of the type 23 license such as operating a tasting room, self-distribution and retail sales but not making any beer at the licensed premise. AB 647 amends B&P code section 23012 to state that a beer manufacturer must have “facilities and equipment for the purposes of, and is engaged in, the commercial manufacturer of beer.”
- Finally, AB 647 addresses the problem of brewing industry regional guilds and associations not being able to sample each other’s beers at meetings held at a brewery. Current law only allows a beer manufacturer to provide samples of beer brewed under that license. In other words, if a brewing industry trade association meeting is held at a brewery, brewery members of that association cannot bring their beers onto the premise and share samples with each other during the course of the meeting. This bill will change the law to allow this practice. The bill amends B&P code section 25503.3(d), which states that samples from a licensed brewery may be served “to attendees at a meeting of a bona fide beer manufacturer trade association or brewers’ guild held on the premises of a licensed beer manufacturer.”