TTB’s Proposes Rule To Modernize Alcohol Labeling and Advertising Regulations

On Monday, November 26, 2018, we published Notice No. 176:  Modernization of the Labeling and Advertising Regulations for Wine, Distilled Spirits, and Malt Beverages in the Federal Register.  In this document, we are proposing to comprehensively amend the regulations governing the labeling and advertising of alcohol beverages in order to improve understanding of the regulatory requirements and to make compliance easier and less burdensome for industry members.

As proposed, 27 CFR parts 4, 5, and 7 continue to contain the labeling regulations for wine, distilled spirits, and malt beverages, respectively, while the current subparts of parts 4, 5, and 7 that relate to advertising are removed from those parts and consolidated into a new part 14.

These revisions are intended to simplify and clarify alcohol beverage labeling and advertising regulatory standards, and incorporate changes in labeling standards that have come about as a result of statutory changes, international agreements, and recent case law.  The revisions also incorporate current TTB guidance and policy into the regulations.

In addition, to mirror a proposed change in the part 5 regulations, we are also proposing to amend 27 CFR part 19 to increase the alcohol content tolerance for distilled spirits to 0.3 percent alcohol by volume above or below the labeled alcohol content.  We believe that this proposal will allow greater flexibility and business efficiencies for bottlers.

To view the proposed rule and any comments related to this proposed rule, go to Docket No. TTB–2018–0007 at To comment on our proposals electronically, use the comment form for Notice No. 176.  To submit comments by mail or hand delivery, see the instructions in the proposed rule.  You also may view the proposed rule as published in the printed Federal Register or as posted online at Federal Register 2.0.

We encourage public comments on these proposed regulatory amendments, particularly from consumers and affected industry members. In addition, we welcome suggestions for other changes to these regulations not specifically proposed in the rulemaking. We are accepting comments through March 26, 2019.

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