Labeling of Wine Specialty Products, Including
To: Proprietors of Bonded Wine Cellars, Importers and Others
Purpose. The purpose of this industry circular is twofold:
(1) to announce the publication of the final rule concerning the
labeling of flavored wine products and (2) to advise industry members
that upon the effective date of the final rule, certificates of
label approval that are not in compliance with the regulations will
be revoked and must be voluntarily surrendered.
Background. On October 6, 2000, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco
and Firearms (ATF) published in the Federal Register a final rule
concerning the labeling of flavored wine products (T.D. ATF-431).
The final regulations, which become effective January 1, 2001, prohibit
the use of any varietal designation (e.g., Chardonnay), type designation
of varietal significance (e.g., Muscatel), semi-generic geographic
type designation (e.g., Chablis), or geographic distinctive designation
(e.g., Bordeaux) in statements of composition for flavored wines
and other wine specialty products.
The final regulations also provide that references on labels to
such designations in the brand name, product name, or fanciful name
are limited to standard grape wines, i.e., wines made in accordance
with the standards prescribed in classes 1, 2, or 3 of 27 CFR 4.21.
In addition, any other use of such designations on other than a
standard grape wine is presumed misleading.
Upon the effective date of the final rule, applications for certificates
of label approval must be in compliance with the regulations. In
accordance with the regulations (27 CFR 13.51 and 13.72(a)(2)),
upon the effective date of the final rule certificates of label
approval (COLAs) that are not in compliance with the regulations
will be revoked by operation of regulation. Certificate holders
must voluntarily surrender all certificates that are no longer in
compliance and submit applications for new certificates that are
in compliance with the new requirements. Industry members are reminded
that once revoked, a COLA cannot be used to bottle wine, remove
wine from the place where bottled (i.e., from bonded premises),
or remove wine from Customs custody (27 CFR 13.73).
Treasury decision ATF-431 is available at ATF's web page at https://www.atf.gov/. If you do not have Internet access, you may contact the Alcohol
Labeling and Formulation Division (toll free) at 1-866-927-2533,
or you may use their commercial telephone number at 202-927-8140.
Inquiries. Inquiries concerning this circular should refer
to its number and be addressed to: Chief, Alcohol Labeling and Formulation
Division, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, 650 Massachusetts
Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20226.
Bradley A. Buckles