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Two new laws that should help winemakers’ bottom line

Last fall, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed several bills into law that help those in California’s wine industry. Two of them specifically help those wineries that have tasting rooms and shops where their products can be sampled and purchased by tourists and locals alike. 

Let’s take a brief look at those:

Wineries can have a second off-site tasting room

Senate Bill (SB) 19 allows wine and brandy makers to obtain licenses for two off-site tasting rooms. Currently, they’re allowed only one “licensed branch premise” that is in a location other than at their production facility where consumers can purchase their product and where they can hold tasting events. A second tasting room will require that winery owners apply for a duplicate license. 

Bring-your-own containers are allowed

Another piece of legislation, Assembly Bill (AB) 239, allows wine and brandy makers to sell or serve their products in containers that are supplied by the consumer. Consumers are also allowed to take their alcohol away from the licensed premises.

These laws, which took effect at the beginning of this year, can help provide a much-needed boost to sales. California’s wine industry has suffered in the wake of fires, drought and the shutdown of much of the state in recent years. 

Providing winery owners with more flexibility in getting their products to customers will no doubt help business. Of course, all new laws come with strict licensing requirements detailed in the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act and enforced by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Whether you need to secure a new license, purchase or sell a property or you’re dealing with compliance or litigation issues, it’s crucial to have experienced legal guidance for your winery.