Late last month, Massachusetts’s Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission issued an advisory entitled “Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (“ABCC”) Advisory to § 18 Wholesalers/Importers and § 19 Manufacturers Regarding Alcohol-Infused Ice Cream.” The Advisory notes that Massachusetts General Law chapter 138 prohibits the importation, manufacturing, and sale of ice cream that contains alcohol with one limited exception—“where the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (“TTB”) has classified in writing that a particular product is a ‘nonbeverage product.’” The ABCC further noted that the TTB classification was “specific to each individual product a business manufactures, and not a business’s entire line of products.” The advisory is available here.
Verrill Dana’s Breweries, Wineries & Distilleries Group is excited to sponsor this year’s Brew Talks New England, part of Brewbound’s traveling series of meetup events for professionals in the brewing industry, on October 24 at Jack’s Abby in Framingham, Massachusetts. The program will offer both educational and networking opportunities for both new and veteran brewers, distributors, retailers, investors and other professionals interested in the craft beer industry.
Learn more about the event and register here. Please note, 100% of ticket proceeds will be donated to a local charity selected by the host brewery.
We hope to see you there!
“I’m gonna tell you a story/I’m gonna tell you about my town/I’m gonna tell you a big fat story, baby/Aw, it’s all about my town/Yeah, down by the river/Down by the banks of the river Charles/…Well, I love that dirty water/Oh, Boston, you’re my home/
The Standells, with those iconic lines, made their way into the vibrant fabric that is Boston, not to mention into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s “500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll”. On October 1, some intrepid Boston area brewers are hoping to own their own little slice of history, by claiming the title to “Brew the Charles”, a featured event at the HUBweek closing party. HUBweek describes itself as a “creative festival that celebrates innovation at the intersection of art, science and technology”. (https://hubweek.org/#about-hubweek) As part of this year’s HUBweek, a Newton, Massachusetts-based water technology company, Desalitech challenged area breweries to make a craft beer, using water from the Charles that had been run through its treatment and purification system. Boston Beer Company, Cape Ann Brewing Company, Castle Island Brewing Co., Harpoon Brewery, Idle Hands Craft Ales and Ipswich Ale Brewery all took the challenge, and each will be presenting their craft beer to a thirsty audience at the HUBweek closing event. Twenty percent of the funds raised will go to the local charity aimed at opening a swimming area on the Charles, the Charles River Conservancy’s “Swim the Charles” program. So, if you happen to be in Boston on October 1st, you can do good while feeling good, and it just doesn’t get any better than that.
Brewing is a serious business, and the members of the Verrill Dana Breweries, Distilleries & Wineries Group are here to help your business navigate the rules and regulations of craft brewing. For more information, or to request assistance, contact a member of the Verrill Dana team.
Wastewater disposal for large breweries, mid-sized establishments, and even small craft brewers, remains a significant environmental and economic challenge. Recently, the oldest brewery in America received an unpleasant reminder of this fact.
D.G. Yuengling and Sons, Inc. was issued a complaint from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) alleging that Yuengling violated its discharge permit standards at least 141 times between 2008 and 2015. Yuengling holds an Industrial User (IU) permit that allows it to discharge wastewater to the publically owned treatment works (POTW), but only after it treats its discharge to limits set in its permit. Treatment of wastewater before discharge is known as, “pretreatment.” For brewers like Yuengling, pretreatment largely involves balancing pH levels and minimizing Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) (a measure of how easy it is for microorganism at the POTW to breakdown organic materials) and Total Suspended Solids (TSS) (a measure of how much particulate material is in wastewater). High levels of BOD and TSS make it difficult for the microorganism at the POTW to do its job of breaking down organic matter and sludge. The remnants from the brewing process such as yeast, sugars, and proteins all elevate both BOD and TSS. (more…)
Late last week, while everyone was focused on the summer holiday, the Department of Labor announced that pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvement Act, OSHA’s maximum penalties, which have not been raised since 1990, will increase by 78 percent. This will increase the “serious”, “other-than-serious” and “posting requirements” penalty from $7,000 to $12,471 per violation, the failure to abate from $7,000 per day beyond abatement date to $12,471 per day beyond abatement date, and increase the maximum penalty for willful or repeated violations from $70,000 to $124,709. These figures can drastically hinder any business, let alone any start-ups or craft-beverage producers. (more…)
To say that alcohol laws are antiquated is an understatement, but there’s only one thing we can do about it—go to our legislators and change them. That is exactly what Massachusetts business-owners are doing.
On Tuesday, two modest changes to Massachusetts alcohol laws were presented to the House of Representative to consider: (more…)
Appellate briefing to the Second Circuit was completed earlier this week in Manhattan Beer Distributors LLC v. NLRB, a case in which the NLRB, in 2015, held that Manhattan Beer Distributors violated an employee’s Weingarten rights when they terminated a distribution employee who “reeked” of marijuana after he refused to submit to a drug test without a union representative present.
In NLRB v. J. Weingarten Inc. (1975), the U.S. Supreme Court held that an employee has a statutory right to request a union representative during an investigative interview which the employee reasonably believes could result in disciplinary action. In the current action, the question was whether the submission to a drug test was “an investigatory interview” which would thus result in the employee having Weingarten rights. (more…)
In a story drawn from the dreams of a back-packing college student, the Associated Press reports that Belgian brewery owner Xavier Vanneste used crowdfunding to help finance development of a two-mile pipeline to pump thousands of gallons of beer each day from his brewery in historic Bruges, Belgium to an industrial zone for bottling.
While building a pipeline seems better suited for oil barons than a Belgian brewer, Venneste’s offer of dividends in the form of one bottle of beer each day for the rest of your life seems to have foamed the fancy of many a European beer enthusiast.
So could crowdfunding turn your craft brewing “pipe” dream into a reality? (more…)
Nothing goes better with a cold one than a bird. Think about it – fried chicken, wings – nothing takes down a case of beer munchies like . . .
(Hold on, I’m being told that this blog post is supposed to be about the growing popularity of combining bird watching with craft brewery tours.)
At any rate, our good friends at the Maine Brew Bus are again teaming up with Derek Lovitch of Freeport Wild Bird Supply to offer a series of tours throughout the year that will allow you dear reader, to check out some of the finest fowl our great state has to offer while simultaneously visiting some great local breweries.
No promises, but if you go to one of these events, I think we all know what you’ll be saying.
Cool story in yesterday’s Portland Press Herald about collaboration between a couple of prominent locals: Liquid Riot has distilled some leftover Sebago Brewing beer (Bonfire Rye ale) to produce a whiskey-like liquor called Bonfire Spirit. Starting April 28th, Sebago will be selling it at its four brewpubs. One catch: there are just 200 12-ounce bottles so it will go fast.
The PPH story details the process in which Sebago and Liquid Riot ended up working together on the creation and also recaps some of the other cross pollination that goes on in the local scene between bars, brewers and distillers.
All and all, some nice publicity for Sebago and Liquid Riot and a good look at the history of southern Maine brewers working with their colleagues/competitors.