Featured Blog

The TTB shares how to’s for cancelling your TTB wine bond

In their latest newsletter the TTB has now shared an update I’ve been waiting to see since their earlier announcement in January of this year in which they shared that permit holders who owe less than $50,000 per year in excise taxes will qualify to cancel their wine bond. (See my earlier blog post on […]

Woops Wineries……….did you spill something?

After spotting a recent article about another type of wine spill I thought it time to add an update to this blog post. The article, “Wine spills into road” couldn’t help but catch my eye.  This was a shipment of bulk wine moving from one winery facility to another. This is what the TTB refers to as […]

US Wineries – time to renew your FDA food facility registration

Guess what US wineries? Another item just came up on your compliance to do list. The biennial food facility registration with the Food & Drug Administration. All US wineries, considered part of the food supply became required to register as food facilities starting in 2003 as a result of the Bioterrorism Act. At first it […]

Further clarifying the TTB label approval application changes

So last week’s post on the newest changes coming this month to the TTB’s online label approval platform COLAs online has caused some confusion with many readers. (Surprise!) Sorry about that readers- I certainly don’t want to add any compliance confusion to your lives! The updates the TTB is making this month to their COLAs […]

TTB now NOT requiring alcohol content, vintage or net contents on label approval applications!

The TTB has just released an update announcing more surprising changes to their COLAs online platform. If COLAs online has no meaning for you it is the electronic label approval platform through which the majority of applications are filed for all alcoholic beverages. The amount of applications submitted for wine just happens to make up […]

US Wineries – harvest tips for any who are Alternating Proprietors

As part of my business assisting wineries with their compliance records and reports I’m often thinking 5 steps ahead of them. On that note this week’s blog post is for all US wine businesses that are the alternating proprietor type. (Or AP as we say in the biz) Specifically I’d like to share my head’s […]

Napa County wineries: Will your 2016 harvest numbers be inside your use permit?

The 2016 grape harvest has been off to a slow start here in Napa County for several weeks now. For all wineries that hold a use permit issued through the Napa County Planning office this means the beginning stage of tracking numbers that are directly related to two areas of their permit.  Those two areas are […]

The compliance of connecting your grape weigh tags to your wine labels

Yet another grape harvest is underway across California & the western states. The grape harvest is where the compliance “story” of a wine and all it’s relevant details begin. From a winery compliance perspective this correlates to the records that any winery is required to be maintaining in their files. At harvest those would primarily […]

Out of state shipments of grapes or bulk wine and the TTB labeling regulation updates

Strike that! Reverse it! This blog post has been edited to correct a misstatement that was listed related specifically to the use of a vintage or varietal on a wine label for a wine blend made from out of state grapes. See below areas in bold where corrections have been made to the original post.  […]

New drop down menu for varietals on TTB wine label approvals

The TTB continues to tweak their various online filing websites. Their COLAs Online website, which is used for submitting label approvals for all alcoholic beverages has recently made changes to the varietal field. For an office like mine that regularly files a lot of TTB label approvals I’m usually pleased to see the improvements they […]

More specifics on Napa County winery use permits now available online

The folks at the Napa County planning office have been busy. It is actually a pretty busy place no matter what, but especially lately around the topic of winery use permits. They have long maintained a downloadable spreadsheet on their website which listed all the approved winery use permits and a very limited amount of […]

TTB updates on label approval exemptions and the bulk wine market

Wine labels and their TTB approvals. There is never a shortage of discussions, questions, and confusion. The latest TTB announcement last week regarding potential regulation changes to wine labels that file for a certificate of exemption from label approval (which alone is one weird contradicting statement) took some time for me to chew over and be […]

The TTB is working weekends! Who knew?

Guess what US winemaking world? Our friends at the TTB are now working on weekends! This applies specifically to the always popular area of wine label approvals, otherwise known as COLAs. How do I know this? Fairly frequently I’ll receive either an approved COLA application or a request for correction on a weekend day. If […]

Purchase bulk wine? Here’s how to document it to meet TTB & CA requirements

Bulk wine. That’s the wine industry term for wine that isn’t in a bottle yet. Instead it is sitting at a permitted winery site in some sort of container, be that a stainless steel tank, a barrel, a drum or a keg or these days perhaps a cement “egg”. Wineries will decide to sell some […]

Being smart about starting a new wine business

I came across this article recently about the “top 10” mistakes that US wineries make in the US market. It was focused on wine importers however I found it to cover several very relevant point for any new wine business. I have conversations every week with people who are in the beginning stages of starting […]