Cheers to Alcohol Facts Labeling to Finally be Addressed by TTB
Like a good bourbon 20 years in the making… the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau will seek input for new rules regarding labeling of alcohol beverages. Get your comments ready!
Kris DeAngelo is an attorney and teaches Wine, Beer, and Spirits Laws and Regulations with MSU's Institute for Food Laws and Regulations.
In 2003 the Center for Science in the Public Interest, the Consumer Federation of America, the National Consumers League, and others petitioned the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) to initiate rulemaking procedures for alcohol beverages to include an Alcohol Fact panel on labels, similar to Nutrition Facts Panel on FDA regulated foods and Supplement Facts Panel on dietary supplements. While TTB published an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) in 2005 and collected comments, only interim rules and proposed rules were set forth. With no final rules issued, the projects were withdrawn in 2017.
In 2021 the petitioners again reached out to TTB to urge action on the matter and require serving size, amount of alcohol per serving, calories per serving, percent alcohol by volume, number of standard drinks per container, a definition of a standard drink, Dietary Guidelines for Americans advice on moderate drinking and ingredient declaration by common or usual name along with major allergen declarations. In 2022, the US Department of Treasury along with the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice issued a report entitled Competition in the Markets for Beer, Wine, and Spirits, urging TTB to address ingredient, nutritional, allergen, and alcohol content, as well as appropriate serving sizes.
In response to the 2003 petition, which has been aging in a barrel at the TTB for the last 20 years, TTB has agreed to open new rulemaking for alcohol beverages for:
- Major food allergens
- Ingredient labeling
- Expanded alcohol content labeling
- Nutrient content labeling
The petitioners to the TTB (the Center for Science in the Public Interest, the Consumer Federation of America, the National Consumers League, and others) propose a label format as illustrated in the image above.
Get your comments ready and stay tuned.
Cheers to TTB!
Learn more about US food labeling at our Food Labeling Workshop in Orlando, March 7-8, 2023.