The Federal Alcohol Administration (FAA) Act sets forth standards for regulating the labeling and advertising of wine (containing at least 7 percent alcohol by volume), distilled spirits, and malt beverages. TTB’s regulations are written to prevent the deception of the consumer and provide them with "adequate information" as to the identity and quality of the product, to prohibit false or misleading statements, and to provide information as to the alcohol content of the product.
What to Expect from an Alcohol Beverage Label
For more details on what information is required on labels, please refer to the Beverage Alcohol Manuals specifically for:
Reading a Label
The information below describes the contents of an alcohol beverage label and what it means to you as a consumer.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides standards for the production, handling, processing, labeling, and marketing of products labeled with organic claims. While these rules were not written or implemented by TTB, they do apply to alcohol beverages. For this reason, TTB has worked closely with USDA to ensure that the alcohol beverage industry has been provided with current and accurate information regarding organic claims on labels. Learn more about the National Organic Program.
Major Food Allergens Labeling
Current regulations under the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (FAA Act) do not require the disclosure of major food allergens on alcohol beverage labels. However, TTB has issued a notice of proposed rulemaking, Notice No. 62, 71 FR 42329, which proposes to make the labeling of major food allergens mandatory. In addition, we have published an interim rule, T.D. TTB-53, 71 FR 42260, which sets forth standards for optional allergen labeling statements. The interim rule went into effect on July 26, 2006.
Consistent with the provisions of the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004, FALCPA, the interim rule defines a "major food allergen" to mean any of the following: milk, egg, fish (e.g., bass, flounder, or cod), Crustacean shellfish (e.g., crab, lobster, or shrimp), tree nuts (e.g., almonds, pecans, or walnuts), wheat, peanuts and soybeans, as well as any food ingredient that contains protein derived from one of these food sources.
TTB implements and enforces a broad range of statutory and compliance provisions to ensure that alcohol products are created, labeled, and marketed in accordance with Federal laws and regulations.
Alcohol producers must apply for a Certification/Exemption of Label/Bottle Approval (COLA) and follow the labeling and advertising regulations. Read more.
TTB uses the Association of Analytical Communities (AOAC) and TTB methods when reviewing labeling and advertising claims by taking samples of alcohol beverage products to validate calorie, fat, carbohydrate, and protein statements. These methods of analysis meet the definitions referenced in Section III of TTB Procedure 2004-1. We consider an advertising or labeling claim acceptable if, when we evaluate the product using these methods, we find that it falls within the tolerance levels specified in Section V of that procedure.
TTB's Alcohol Beverage Advertising Program monitors the market place to ensure compliance with the alcohol beverage advertising regulations.
TTB's Alcohol Beverage Advertising Program
TTB monitors the advertising of alcohol beverages through a combination of:
Examples of advertising areas that TTB will review include, but are not limited to, the following:
TTB will select industry members for advertising examination based on various indicators such as prior compliance history, advertising methods, and market impact, as well as random sampling factors. We will also continue to respond to specific complaints and referrals. TTB specialists will work individually with industry members to answer questions and to ensure the correction and/or removal of any improper advertising currently in use.
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