Trade Practices

Federal Alcohol Administration Act of 1935

Historical Background

The Twenty-first Amendment to the Constitution, repealing Prohibition, achieved ratification with unanticipated speed by December 5, 1933, catching Congress in recess. As an interim measure to manage a burgeoning legitimate alcohol industry, by executive order under the National Industrial Recovery Act, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Federal Alcohol Control Administration (FACA). FACA, in cooperation with the Departments of Agriculture and Treasury, endeavored to guide wineries and distilleries under a system based on brewers' voluntary codes of fair competition. FACA was relieved of its burden and effectively vanished from history after just twenty months, when President Roosevelt signed the Federal Alcohol Administration (FAA) Act in August 1935 and Treasury once more found itself regulating the alcohol industry.

Although Prohibition was officially over, the era's lingering effects continued to shape the federal policies for decades. On March 10, 1934, Justice's Prohibition enforcement duties folded into the infant Alcohol Tax Unit (ATU), Bureau of Internal Revenue, Department of the Treasury. At the same time, Federal Alcohol Administration (FAA), functioning independently within Treasury, was carrying forward its mandate to collect data, to establish license and permit requirements, and define the regulations that ensure an open, fair marketplace for the alcohol industry and the American consumer. In 1940, FAA as an administration merged with the ATU, but the FAA Act continues today as part of the foundation of TTB's enabling legislation.

Source: Extracted from About TTB History

Page last reviewed/updated: 08/07/2013

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