Changes to the Internal Revenue Code criteria for the "hard cider" tax rate made by the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (PATH Act) will become effective for wines removed from wine premises or customs custody on or after January 1, 2017. The hard cider tax rate is lower than the tax rate for other wines. The modified criteria broaden the range of wines eligible for the hard cider tax rate as follows:
Wine eligible for the hard cider tax rate cannot contain fruit products or fruit flavors other than apple and pear.
We have developed regulations to implement these statutory changes, as well as guidance to assist industry members with compliance. Both will be published soon. When the regulations and guidance are available, we will issue separate announcements.
If you have any questions regarding these statutory changes, please contact TTB's Regulations and Rulings Division by email, at email@example.com, or by telephone, at 202-453-2265.