USE OF THE WORD KENTUCKY ON LABELS FOR "LIGHT WHISKY".
Proprietors of Distilled Spirits
Plants and others concerned:
The purpose of this circular is to announce a finding by the
Director that the use of the word Kentucky is prohibited on
labels for "Light Whisky".
Treasury Decision 6945, published in the Federal Register on
January 26, 1968, amended the distilled spirits labeling regulations (27 CFR, Part 5) to provide a new standard of identity
for "Light Whisky" (effective July 1, 1972, with respect to
whisky distilled on and after January 26, 1968). In connection with the promulgation of this new standard of identity,
the regulations were amended by adding a new subparagraph (5)
to section 5.21(h) of the regulations. This new subparagraph
reads as follows:
(5) The name of any State which the Director finds
is associated by consumers with an American type
whisky shall not appear in any manner on any
label for light whisky, as defined in paragraph
(b)(11) of this section, except as a part of the
name and address of the distiller, bottler, or
person bottled for, as required by section 5.35
(a) and (c).
When the then-proposed standard of identity for "Light Whisky"
was considered at the hearings held in September, 1967, testimony was received from a number of Kentucky distillers to
the effect that "Kentucky" should not be used to describe any
light whisky produced in Kentucky, lest it be confused with
"Bourbon" for which the State is famous. It was, of course,
recognized that the name "Kentucky" could not be prohibited
in the name and address of a Kentucky bottler, since that is
specifically required by other regulatory provisions. This
was one of the reasons for the amendment of 5.21(h) of 27 CFR.
Pursuant to the provisions of 27 CFR, 5.21(h) Class 8(5), the
Director has found that the State of Kentucky is associated
by consumers with an American type whisky. Therefore, the name
Kentucky may not appear in any manner on any label for light
whisky as defined in 27 CFR, 5.21(b) Class 2(11), except as
part of the name and address of the distiller, bottler, or
person bottled for, as required by Sections 5.25(a) and (c).
This finding will be published as a revenue ruling in the near
Correspondence in regard to this industry circular should refer
to its number and be addressed to the Director, Alcohol and
Tobacco Tax Division (CP:AT:B), Washington, D.C. 20224.
Harold A. Serr
Director, Alcohol and Tobacco Tax Division