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Industry Circular

Number: 70-8
Date: February 3, 1970

Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Division
Washington, D.C. 20224


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Bottlers and Importers of Distilled Spirits, and others concerned:


The purpose of this circular is to alert industry members to recent amendments to 27 CFR, Part 5, which may affect the labeling of imported gin designated as "distilled gin".


Section 5.22(c), Class 3, defines "gin" as a product obtained by original distillation from mash, or by redistillation of distilled spirits, or by mixing neutral spirits, with or over juniper berries and other aromatics, or with or over extracts derived from infusions, percolations, or maceration of such materials, and includes mixtures of gin and neutral spirits. It is required to derive its main characteristic flavor from juniper berries and be bottled at not less than 80 proof. Unless it is produced exclusively by original distillation or by redistillation, gin may not be further designated as "distilled". These rules apply to all gins, domestic and imported. Established inspector controls assure compliance of all domestic gins. In the absence of such official knowledge covering gins produced abroad, the following special procedures are prescribed covering imported gins.

Section 5.51 provides, in connection with the release of bottled gin from Customs custody, that applications for certificates of approval covering labels for gin bearing the word "distilled" as a part of the designation shall be accompanied by a statement, prepared by the manufacturer, setting forth the step-by-step description of the manufacturing process.

Section 5.55(a) requires a similar statement to accompany applications for certificates of approval covering labels for imported "distilled" gin domestically bottled.

The provisions in Sections 5.51 and 5.55(a) become effective on February 1, 1970, and all applications for certificates of approval covering labels for imported "distilled" gin filed thereafter must be accompanied by statements of process prepared by the manufacturers of gin.

Since these requirements are made applicable only with respect to labels submitted for approval after the effective date of the regulations and as the Director has a responsibility under the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (27 U.S.C. 205(e)) and regulations thereunder (27 CFR, Part 5) to provide the same degree of assurance to the consumer with respect to all imported "distilled" gins, he can discharge this responsibility only by requesting all importers of bottled "distilled" and domestic bottlers of bulk imported "distilled" gin to submit to him similar statements from manufacturers abroad with respect to labels used on "distilled" gin covered by certificates of label approval issued prior to the effective date of these new regulatory requirements (February 1, 1970). This request is under authority of the regulations (27 CFR 5.33(g)), which read as follows:

"Contents of bottles. A complete and accurate statement of the contents of the bottles to which labels are to be or have been affixed shall be submitted, on request, to the Director or the assistant regional commissioner."


Importers of bottled "distilled" gin and domestic bottlers of imported "distilled" gin are reminded that all applications for label approval must be accompanied by statements from their manufacturers abroad describing, step-bystep, the process of manufacturing the "distilled" gin. This statement must clearly indicate whether or not spirits have been added to the gin after distillation.

Similarly, under authority of the regulations in 27 CFR 5.33(g), all importers of bottled "distilled" gin and all domestic bottlers of imported "distilled" gin who are using labels covered by certificates of label approval issued subsequent to July 1, 1968, and prior to February 1, 1970, are requested to submit similar statements from their manufacturers abroad with respect to all such labels in use. These statements should be obtained for submission to the Director (Attention: CP:AT:B) as soon as possible but not later than April 30, 1970.


Inquiries with respect to this circular should be addressed to the Director, Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Division, Internal Revenue Service, Washington, D.C. 20224 (Attention: CP:AT:B).

Harold Serr

Harold A. Serr,

Director Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Division

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