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August 14, 2020


Greetings! This week’s top news includes a reminder about health claims in alcohol beverage advertisements, and tips to avoid problems with the Government Warning on alcohol beverage labels. Also, our TTB Online systems will be unavailable overnight August 20 while we perform maintenance.


TTB enforces the advertising regulations that apply to alcohol beverages subject to the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (FAA Act). The regulations apply to most alcohol beverages, but do not apply to:

  • Wine products with less than 7% alcohol by volume, and
  • Brewed products properly classified as “beer” under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, but not classified as “malt beverages” under the FAA Act (see TTB Ruling 2008-3).

We have found an increasing number of alcohol beverage advertisements, including company websites and social media accounts, depicting health-related statements that suggest a relationship between the consumption of an alcohol beverage and its purported health benefits or effects.

We remind industry members that the TTB advertising regulations prohibit any health-related statement that is untrue in any particular or tends to create a misleading impression as to the effects of consumption on health. For more detailed information regarding health claims and advertisements, you may review our regulations:

If you are unsure if your advertising material is in compliance with TTB regulations, we encourage you to submit your advertising to us for review. We will review your advertising material at no charge to determine if it complies with the appropriate advertising regulations. You may send any advertising material to for review.

If you would like to report an advertisement that you feel is in violation of TTB regulations, you may also use Please provide a screen shot or photo of the advertising material in question. Please note that we generally do not comment on the outcome or provide the findings of advertising reviews except to the responsible advertiser.


Errors in the mandatory health warning statement on alcohol beverage labels—including punctuation and formatting problems—is one of the most common reasons COLA applications are returned for correction.

The following health warning statement must appear on all alcohol beverages for sale or distribution in the U.S. that contain 0.5% or more alcohol by volume:

GOVERNMENT WARNING: (1) According to the Surgeon General, women should not drink alcoholic beverages during pregnancy because of the risk of birth defects. (2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs your ability to drive a car or operate machinery, and may cause health problems.

Follow these tips:

Image of the Health Warning.

See the regulations in 27 CFR part 16 for the full rules about how to meet the health warning statement labeling requirements and speed your label approval process. System Maintenance for Thursday, August 20

Please be advised that access to the following custom applications will be unavailable in order to perform system maintenance:

  • COLAs Online
  • Formulas Online
  • Permits Online

This outage begins at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday, August 20, 2020, and all applications are expected to return to normal operations no later than 6 a.m. ET on Friday, August 21, 2020.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your patience. Please contact the TTB Help Desk at or 866-240-0835 if you experience any issues or problems following the outage.

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