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December 7, 2012

Greetings!  We hope you are having a top-notch and exemplary week!  This edition includes new information about small brewer's bonds, clarification about freshness dating and allowable returns of malt beverage products under the FAA Act, a recap of our participation at recent conferences for state alcohol regulators, and the answer to whether or not TTB regulates butanols, such as isobutanol. 

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In the TTB Newsletter, we compile the top TTB news of the week and other helpful information about the Bureau and the Federal alcohol and tobacco laws and regulations we enforce.

Please send any questions or comments to the Executive Liaison for Industry Matters at IndustryLiaison@ttb.gov and/or StateLiaison@ttb.gov.

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TTB AMENDS REGULATION REGARDING BONDS FOR SMALL BREWERS

We have issued a temporary rule that amended TTB's regulatory requirements regarding the penal sum of the brewer's bond.  Read the temporary rule, T.D. TTB-109, for details concerning this change, as well as a related notice of proposed rulemaking, Notice No. 131, which proposes to adopt the new bond amount as a permanent regulatory change and proposes other regulatory changes affecting small brewers.  You may read the temporary rule and the notice of proposed rulemaking, and submit comments on our proposal, within Docket No. TTB-2012-0006 at the Regulations.gov website. 

For more information read our press release.

On December 13, 2012, we revised this news item to more accurately reflect the text of TTB T.D.-109.

FRESHNESS DATING AND ALLOWABLE RETURNS OF MALT BEVERAGE PRODUCTS UNDER THE FEDERAL ALCOHOL ADMINISTRATION ACT (FAA ACT)

We recently issued TTB Ruling 2012-4  to clarify the conditions that would allow retailers to return malt beverage products to wholesalers because of freshness concerns, without violating the consignment sales provision of the FAA Act and TTB regulations.

Read TTB Ruling 2012-4 for more information about the conditions and limitations of freshness dating and allowable returns.

TTB DISCUSSES CURRENT INITIATIVES WITH STATE CONFERENCE ATTENDEES

TTB employees participated in three recent conferences hosted by state alcohol control agencies.  Participating in these conferences is part of our commitment to service and outreach, which lays the foundation for a compliant industry.
At the conferences, we presented information on topics such as online permit filing at the state and federal level, and our initiative to streamline the alcohol label approval process-including modernizing and simplifying label regulations. We encouraged state regulators to join in the discussion about these issues and to provide feedback on proposed changes to our services.

Read the story.

DOES TTB REGULATE BUTANOLS, SUCH AS ISOBUTANOL?

Isobutanol is a type of alcohol that may be produced from petroleum or by fermentation, and TTB requirements may apply depending on the circumstances.  TTB's authority under the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) includes requirements relating to "distilled spirits." Under the IRC, the term "distilled spirits" includes ethyl alcohol in any form (for example, beverage alcohol or fuel ethanol), except for beer or wine.

Although the term does not include isobutanol, TTB requirements apply if distilled spirits are produced or used in connection with isobutanol manufacturing.  For example, if a manufacturer produces isobutanol by a fermentation process that also generates ethyl alcohol, and the manufacturer separates the materials using distillation, the manufacturer may be required to qualify as a distilled spirits plant under 27 CFR part 19.

For more information, contact our Regulations and Rulings Division at IndustrialAlcoholRegs@ttb.gov.