EQUIVALENT NET CONTENT STATEMENT
REQUIRED BY 27 CFR 4.37(b)
Proprietors of Bonded Wine Cellars, Taxpaid Wine Bottling Houses,
Distilled Spirits Plants, Importers, and others concerned:
Purpose. The purpose of this circular is to clarify the status
of the equivalent volume statement required by 27 CFR 4.37(b) to
appear on wine labels in direct conjunction with the net contents
of metric wine containers.
Metric standards of fill for wine are prescribed at § 4.73.
These 7 sizes, expressed in liters and milliliters, represent
the exact quantity of wine (within prescribed tolerances) required
to be filled into bottles so labeled.
For the purpose of consumer education, § 4.37(b) requires a
statement of the equivalent volume of the bottle, expressed in
U.S. fluid ounces, to appear in direct conjunction with the
metric net content. However, due to rounding this fluid ounce
equivalent does not accurately describe the bottles' net content
and this quantity must not be used for recordkeeping, for tax
determination, or for establishing the correct fill of bottles.
For these operations, the metric standard of fill, converted to
wine gallons by means of the factor 1 liter equals 0.26417 gallons,
must be used rather than the equivalent U.S. volume.
In the case of 3 liter bottles, the actual fill is exactly
3 liters or 101.44 fluid ounces. For labeling purposes, this
statement was rounded to 101 fluid ounces because the Bureau
believes that showing fractions of an ounce for quantities in
excess of 100 ounces conveys no more useful information to the
consumer than showing the nearest full ounce. Proprietors are
reminded that these bottles must contain 3 liters which equals
101.44 fluid ounces in U.S. measure; those bottles filled to
only 101 ounces will be considered underfilled and not in com-
pliance with the standard of fill regulations. The label state-
ment as required by § 4.37(b)(1) remains: 3 liters (101 fl. oz.).
Inquiries. Inquiries concerning this circular should
refer to its number and be addressed to the Assistant Director
(Regulatory Enforcement), Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms,
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20226.
Rex D. Davis