Free the Grapes! May 2022 Winery Update

STATES STEPPING UP COMPLIANCE CHECKS Many states are conducting sting operations and compliance checks to ensure wineries are following their DTC shipping rules. Missouri has sent cease and desist letters to several wineries for violating the 2 cases/month/person limit. While the vast majority of wineries are following these rules to the letter – assisted by ... Read more

Free the Grapes! April 2022 Winery Update

Spring is a very busy time in many state capitols. Here’s an update on the “hot” states that could use winery help, plus additional states with legislative activity.  LEGISLATIVE UPDATES: Hot States   ALASKA: Reasonable Limits SoughtAfter it passed the Senate on 2/8, Senate Bill 9 was amended in the House to include spirits and beer, ... Read more

Free the Grapes! March 2022 Winery Update

March 1, 2022 LEGISLATIVE UPDATES NEW JERSEY: Two Favorable Bills Introduced to Remove Capacity Cap Assembly Bill 2432 and Senate Bill 549 were introduced in the new, 2022-23 legislative session. Like last session’s Assembly Bill 1943, the new bills would create a license for wine companies whose aggregate production exceeds 250,000 gallons per year. In ... Read more

Free the Grapes! November 2021 Winery Update

November 1, 2021 One can never say that DTC shipping legislation is boring. Here are some highlights from 2021 (so far): Ohio now allows DTC shipments for wineries producing more than 250k gallons/year; Alabama became the 47th state to allow winery-to-consumer direct shipping although the application process is challenging; New Jersey’s Commerce Committee heard a ... Read more

Free the Grapes! July 2021 Winery Update

July 19, 2021 SAVE THE DATE: DTC Wine Symposium  January 19-20, 2022  For the first time, the DTC Wine Symposium will be available as both an in-person conference and a livestream event!  Attendees of the 15th annual conference can expect two full days of programming with thought-provoking keynotes, practical sessions, roundtable discussions on a variety of ... Read more

Alabama Becomes 47th State to Allow Winery DTC

Alabama will become the 47th state to open for winery direct-to-consumer shipping, August 1, 2021. Here is a statement made May 14 by Wine Institute, a public policy association of California wineries and related businesses: “Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed legislation (H.B. 437), based on Wine Institute’s model direct shipping bill, on May 13, 2021. ... Read more

Tennessee Adopts Workable Fulfillment House Legislation

As previously reported, legislation was introduced that would have surreptitiously eliminated a Tennessee consumer’s ability to purchase and receive wines directly from a favorite winery. House Bill 742 would have limited Tennessee residents to direct shipments sent ONLY FROM THE VINEYARD and not through what are called fulfillment houses. Fulfillment houses are widely used by wineries to warehouse wine, pick and pack shipments, and then arrange for shipment using common carriers ... Read more

Free the Grapes! April 2021 Winery Update

LEGISLATIVE UPDATES: HOT STATES ALABAMA: Moves Closer to OpeningAs you know, Alabama currently bans on winery DTC shipping. SB138, introduced this year, would allow for winery DTC shipping and includes a fulfillment house license requirement.  The bill passed the House unanimously on 4/1/21 and moves to the Senate. UPDATE 4/30: On 4/29/21, the bill, now ... Read more

Analysis of the Impact of A1943/S2683 in New Jersey

Summary: This report analyzes the likely impacts of passage of the New Jersey bill currently being considered by the Assembly and Senate, known as A1943/S2683 (the “Bill”). The Bill would expand the offering of direct-to-consumer (“DTC”) shipping permits to wineries that produce more than 250,000 gallons of wine per year. New Jersey has allowed DTC ... Read more

Free the Grapes! February 2021 Winery Update

LEGISLATIVE UPDATES TENNESSEE: Winery DTC Shipping under Threat! Two new bills in Tennessee pose a grave threat to winery DTC. We need your help reaching TN wine lovers to help oppose the bills ASAP. House Bill 742 and its companion Senate Bill 705 would ban winery shipments to TN residents that move through a fulfillment ... Read more