FURTHER REGULATION AND THE ANTIQUATION OF THE NOTORIOUS B-I-B We’ve come a very long way since 1897 in terms of alcohol law in the United States. Well, excluding the massive regression known as Prohibition that we haven’t fully recovered from, that is. There have always been lots of laws regarding the production and labeling of spirits. Take bourbon, for instance. As per the TTB Chapter 4 Class and Type Designation, bourbon whiskey is guaranteed to be produced in the U.S. at not exceeding 80% alcohol by volume (160 proof) from a fermented mash of not less than 51 percent corn and stored at not more than 62.5% alcohol by volume (125 proof) in charred new oak containers. That’s so many rules that simply labeling a whiskey as bourbon, consumers are assured of its relative quality. There is very little added value by the Bottled-in-Bond Act on top of modern regulations. In most cases, it’s a novelty at best. A great marketing buzzword. We don’t need it anymore. Or do we?
MODERN PROBLEMS REQUIRE MODERN SOLUTIONS Let’s focus on a couple key pieces of the act for a second here:
The spirit is the product of one distilling season, by one distiller, at one distillery, that is (noted) on the label. For a product that is designated bottled in bond, the distillery on the label must be the producing distillery. There is no possible legal way for an independently bottled or sourced whiskey to be misrepresented. Following these guidelines is a powerful way to show consumers that your product is your own without having to parade them through your production floor so they can see your literal blood, sweat, and tears. An example of this is Finger Lakes Distilling’s McKenzie Bottled-inBond Wheated Bourbon. As consumers can see on the label, it is clearly designated right across the top as B-I-B. There is no need to inspect every inch of the label for a small “Distilled in a different state than the distillery” disclaimer. Bottled-in-Bond can be a powerful tool to instill confidence in the consumer base, and the more confident a consumer is in your product, the more likely they are to purchase it. Don’t give them the opportunity to question your integrity when there is no reason to.
George B. Catallo is the “Whiskey Guy” and Floor/Social Media Manager at Parkway Wine and Liquor in Rochester, NY. He has been in the beverage industry since he turned twenty-one and has worked as the Bar Operations Manager of a wine bar, an Assistant Distiller and Supplier Rep for a craft distillery, and has even hosted a spirits review web series on YouTube under the moniker 'Just One Dram.'
LET US HELP YOUR SPIRITS LOOK AS GOOD AS THEY TASTE. imperial-packaging.com · 888.326.5679 · email@example.com
The magazine for craft distillers and their fans.