U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau

12/03/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/03/2021 15:48

TTB Newsletter for December 3, 2021

Distilled Spirits Label Tips

Recently, we covered common errors we encounter on certificate of label approval (COLA) applications for wine and malt beverages. This week we're focusing on distilled spirits.

Following these four tips will help you to receive a speedy approval!

  1. Make sure you use one of the specified formats for stating the alcohol content of the product. Although consumers may understand the term ABV, it is not an acceptable format for stating alcohol content.
  2. There are specific formatting requirements for the health warning statement, including that the words GOVERNMENT WARNING appear in capital letters in bold type. Cutting and pasting the text from our Health Warning Statement page, will help you to get it right!
  3. Be careful not to include two different product designations (the class and/or type of product) on your label. For example, a flavored vodka may not be referred to as vodka elsewhere on the label, because vodka and flavored vodka are two different classes of products.
  4. A class/type designation is required for all distilled spirits, even if an optional fanciful name alludes to the type of distilled spirits in the bottle. For example, the fanciful name "Spiced Rum," standing alone, does not satisfy the requirement for a class/type designation -- the brand label must also include a statement of composition (such as, "Rum with natural flavors added").

Proofing Resources for Distilled Spirits Plants

Distilled spirits plant (DSP) proprietors are required to determine taxes owed on spirits removed from their bonded premises. To do this, proprietors need to gauge the spirits-that is, determine the quantity and proof.

If you are a DSP proprietor, it is important that you know how to correctly proof your spirits. Below you'll find some resources to help you with the proofing process.

TTB Proofing Resources

Tobacco Executive Sentenced to Five Years in Prison for Conspiracy to Evade Federal Excise Taxes on Cigars

On Wednesday, December 1, 2021, Akrum Alrahib, 43, of Los Angeles, California, was sentenced to 60 month's imprisonment and ordered to pay more than $7 million in restitution for his participation in a fraudulent scheme to avoid the payment of millions of dollars in excise taxes on imported tobacco products.