Posts Tagged ‘DISCUS’

SHUT DOWN, SIP LESS?

Friday, October 4th, 2013

How the US government’s shut down is wreaking havoc with the spirits industry
By Francine Cohe
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Washington DC with monument in background quiet

Think that just because you’re not one of the 800,000 “non-essential personnel” furloughed during the government shut down this week that you and your hospitality/liquor industry brethren and the customers you serve won’t feel the sting? Think again.

While you’re all still expected to be at your job as normal, and it doesn’t seem evident that anything much has changed on a day to day basis, OND sales numbers, product innovation, and revenue (brand and tax revenue) is going to be down this year. Not to mention the possibility of product shortages. There’s no telling yet just how hard we’ll be hit. But it’s certain you’ll see the impact in some way.

Though it is highly unlikely you’re in the same boat as Allison Evanow of Square One Organic Spirits (www.squareoneorganicspirits.com) and Brian Facquet of Prohibition Distillery (www.prohibitiondistillery.com), two craft distillers in the delegation organized by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (www.discus.org) to present their handcrafted products to VIPs at Berlin’s Bar Convent next week who were just notified that the venue had changed from the American Embassy to the Berlin Hilton thanks to our legislators not coming to consensus, the impact of this government shut down won’t go unnoticed.

Maybe it’ll be noticeable bare spots on your shelves because imported products are tied up at port. That’s a problem that Lizzie Asher, President of Macchu Pisco (www.macchupisco.com), is presently facing. Or maybe you’re a retailer awaiting holiday VAPs to fill your shelves in one of the busiest selling seasons of the year and those new products simply aren’t available. Producers who live and breathe for those on and off premise account sales are certainly feeling it now. Jason Johnstone-Yellin of Single Cask Nation (www.singlecasknation.com) notes, “Single Cask Nation has product sitting at the Glenfarclas distillery that cannot be imported before TTB approval is received. Further, our US-sourced Chanukah releases are delayed while we wait to

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BRAIN FOOD – BOOZE FOR BABES

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Give Women What They Want. Not What You Think They Need.
By Francine Cohen

Booze for Babes cover image.jpg

Booze for Babes: The Smart Woman’s Guide to Drinking Spirit Right, and its author Kayleigh Kulp, is ready to be your agent of change if you let it/her be.

This soon to be published tome that will quickly become a must read for the Skinny Girl/whipped cream vodka set is destined to turn things around for female drinkers everywhere; much as it did for Kulp. The author began as an uninformed imbiber who admits, “I really didn’t have any preferences. I was a victim of that marketing – I would drink bottled cocktails and all the flavored vodkas that are the weird candy flavors. It was because I didn’t know enough to care.” Now, like you, she knows plenty. And she cares!

This appreciation began on a DISCUS (Distilled Spirits Council of the United States – www.discus.org) trip to visit whiskey country for a travel story she had been assigned. There, her eyes were opened. It was the first time she’d ever experienced whiskey production and she notes, “There was such an impact being able to see how it was made and see all the products. This was a whole new world of exploration that I had already done with food and wine but never the brown spirits my husband had been drinking for example.”

She continues, “I came back home and discovered my favorite whiskeys and in talking to my girlfriends about this new passion and drinking whiskey while out with them they were asking, ‘why are you drinking whiskey?’ and so I wondered why do I and my girlfriends have this issue and my husband his friends don’t?”

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ON APRIL 11TH 2013 CACHAÇA COMES INTO ITS OWN

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

Today the TTB Amends the Distilled Spirits Identity Regulations to Recognize “Cachaça” as a Type of Rum and Distinctive Product of Brazil

We’ll be getting you more details on this breaking story shortly, but first we are just so THRILLED to announce, in short, that as of today you can expect to see Cachaça labeled here in the US as Cachaça; and not just as “Brazilian Rum.”

Brands like Leblon (www.leblon.com) who had a significant part in bringing this new legislation to life, as well as fledgling brands like Avua (www.avuacachaca.com) and Cabana (www.cabanacachaca.com,) and all others in between, are going to benefit from this new designation.

Below are the facts from Washington. Stay tuned for more on actual impact.

Washington, D.C. — On February 25, 2013, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade
Bureau (TTB) will publish a final rule in the Federal Register amending its regulations
regarding the standards of identity for distilled spirits to recognize “Cachaça” as a type
of rum and as a distinctive product of Brazil. This final rule will be effective on April 11,
2013.

TTB first undertook this rulemaking in response to a petition from the Government of
Brazil, which requested that the United States recognize Cachaça as a distinctive
product of Brazil. Following discussions among officials of Brazil, the Office of the
United States Trade Representative, and TTB, representatives of Brazil and the United
States signed an agreement on April 9, 2012, under which the United States would
recognize Cachaça as a distinctive product of Brazil, and, in turn, Brazil would, within 30
days, recognize Bourbon Whiskey and Tennessee Whiskey as distinctive products of
the United States.

Under Brazilian law, “Cachaça” is a Brazilian distilled spirits product with an alcohol
content of 38 to 48 percent by volume at 20 degrees Celsius, obtained from the
distillation of the fermented must of sugar cane. In the United States, previous to the
effective date of this final rule, TTB classified Cachaça products as rums under its
distilled spirits standards of identity regulations at 27 CFR 5.22(f).
In a proposed rule published in the Federal Register on April 30, 2012, TTB proposed to
amend 27 CFR 5.22(f) to recognize Cachaça as a type within the class designation
“rum” that would be recognized as a distinctive product of Brazil made in compliance
with Brazilian laws. Thus, under TTB’s proposal, a qualifying product may simply be
labeled as “Cachaça” without the term “rum” on the label (just as a product labeled with
the type designation “Cognac” is not required to also bear the class designation
“brandy”).

While the Brazilian standard allows products designated as Cachaça to have an alcohol
content ranging from 38 to 48 percent alcohol by volume, the United States standard
requires that rum be bottled at not less than 40 percent alcohol by volume, or 80
degrees proof. Therefore, any “Cachaça” imported into the United States will have to
conform to this minimum bottling proof requirement. A product that is bottled at below
40 percent alcohol by volume will fall outside the type designation for Cachaça, but,
depending on the product’s manufacturing method, the product could be labeled as a
“diluted Cachaça” or a distilled spirits specialty product bearing a statement of
composition. The “Cachaça” type description also will not allow any spirits that use corn
or corn syrup in the fermentation process to be labeled as Cachaça. In addition, the
amended regulation will allow the word “Cachaça” to be spelled with or without the
diacritic mark (i.e., “Cachaça” or “Cachaca”). Finally, the regulation contains a 180-day
transition period during which producers may continue to use previously approved
“Cachaça” labels for products that do not conform to the new Cachaça standard of
identity at 27 CFR 5.22(f)(1).

To view the complete rulemaking record regarding this regulatory amendment, including
the Brazilian petition, the proposed rule (Notice No. 127), the public comments received
in response to the proposed rule, and the final rule (T.D. TTB–112) once it is published,
see Docket No. TTB–2012–0002 at the “Regulations.gov” website
(www.regulations.gov).

SEND THEM OUR BOURBON

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

NEWS RELEASE
DISCUS: Congressional Approval of Free Trade Agreements
Will Increase Exports and Support U.S. Jobs

WASHINGTON – The Distilled Spirits Council said today Congressional approval of free trade agreements (FTAs) with Colombia, South Korea, and Panama will lead to significant increases in American distilled spirits exports, while contributing to job growth in the U.S.

“Market opening agreements such as these are critical to improving our competitiveness in the global distilled spirits marketplace and to growing jobs in the United States” said Dr. Peter Cressy, Distilled Spirits Council President and CEO.

“Beneficial provisions contained in these historic agreements will help to significantly increase U.S. spirits exports, especially Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey, in these rapidly growing export markets,” he added. “America makes great spirits products, and adult consumers around the globe should be able to enjoy them unencumbered by tariffs or other market-distorting barriers.”

Under the agreements, all three trading partners have agreed to eliminate tariffs on U.S. distilled spirits upon implementation or over five to ten years, depending on the product.

“These agreements will level the playing field for U.S. spirits and, in some cases, actually provide U.S. spirits a competitive advantage,” Cressy added. “For example, as soon as the U.S.-Korea FTA enters into force, the current 20% tariff on Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey will be completely eliminated. This is particularly important since Korea is one the largest spirits markets in the world.”

In addition to removing tariff barriers, all three agreements will protect Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey as distinctive products of the U.S. This will further expand international recognition that Bourbon and Tennessee Whiskey must be made in America according to U.S. standards. These products account for approximately 66% of total U.S. spirits exports worldwide.

“We are extremely grateful to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Departments of Commerce and Agriculture for the excellent results they achieved for distilled spirits in these agreements,” Cressy concluded. “The U.S. spirits industry looks forward to prompt implementation of the FTAs in order to begin reaping the benefits they provide.”

Over the past 10 years, global U.S. spirits exports have more than doubled; in 2010, the value of total U.S. spirits exports exceeded $1 billion for the fourth consecutive year. The value of U.S. spirits exports to Korea, Colombia and Panama collectively has grown to $16 million in 2010, representing a 97% increase since 2006.

****The Distilled Spirits Council is the trade association representing producers and marketers of distilled spirits sold in the United States.

VIRGINIA IS FOR LOVERS. AND SOON, FOR IN STORE TASTINGS

Friday, March 12th, 2010

Blue Law Banning Spirits Tastings at ABC Stores Goes Away–

NEWS RELEASE by The Distilled Spirits Council (DISCUS)

RICHMOND, VA – In a strong move toward modernizing Virginia’s alcohol laws, Republican Governor Bob McDonnell signed legislation knocking down a decades-old ban on liquor tasting events at ABC stores, according to the Distilled Spirits Council (DISCUS) which said the bill modernized an outdated law that had only allowed for beer and wine tastings.

House Bill 952, sponsored by Delegate S. Chris Jones, gives adult consumers the opportunity to sample up to three separate one-half ounce servings of spirits in any one calendar day at a pre-planned tasting event.

“In today’s economy it’s more important than ever to give customers the tools to make better purchasing decisions,” said DISCUS Vice President David Wojnar,

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