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TTB NEWSLETTER | Weekly News

October 2, 2020


IN THIS ISSUE

Greetings! This week’s top news includes an expansion of the tolerances for calorie statements on alcohol labels and in advertisements, proposals for three new AVAs, and travelers returning to the U.S. may no longer bring back with them alcohol beverages, cigars and other tobacco products of Cuban origin for personal use.

UPDATED GUIDANCE ON VOLUNTARY CALORIE STATEMENTS

On September 28, we published two new guidance documents that expand the tolerances for voluntary calorie statements in the labeling and advertising of alcohol beverages. This makes our calorie tolerances more consistent with the food labeling regulations of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and may facilitate the broader use of voluntary nutrient content statements in alcohol beverage labeling and advertising. This ruling does not require any changes to approved labels, but instead allows greater flexibility for industry members who choose to use voluntary nutrient content statements on labels or in advertisements.

The ruling also clarifies that, consistent with current policy, industry members are not required to obtain laboratory analyses of each batch to substantiate voluntary nutrient content statements. To the extent that  industry members choose to rely on databases or “typical value” charts to determine nutrient content values, it is their responsibility to ensure that the labeling and advertisement statements will be reliable and accurate, within the tolerances contained in TTB guidance documents.

For more details, view TTB Ruling 2020-1 and TTB Procedure 2020-1.

COMMENTS SOUGHT ON THREE PROPOSED NEW AVAS

In the Federal Register of Thursday, October 1, 2020, we published proposals to establish three new American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), i.e., grape growing regions. We are accepting comments through November 30, 2020, on all three proposals. You can view the proposed boundaries of each on our AVA Map Explorer.

Mt. Pisgah, Polk County, Oregon. Notice No. 193. This proposed 5,850-acre AVA is located in Polk County, Oregon, and it is located within the established Willamette Valley viticultural area. We are making this proposal in response to a petition filed on behalf of the local grape growers and winemakers.

See Docket No. TTB–2020–0008 at Regulations.gov for additional details and to submit comments electronically.

San Luis Obispo Coast (SLO Coast). Notice No.194. The proposed 408,585-acre AVA is located in San Luis Obispo County, California. TTB is proposing to recognize both “San Luis Obispo Coast” and the abbreviated “SLO Coast” as the name of the proposed AVA, which is located within the established Central Coast viticultural area and would entirely encompass the established Edna Valley and Arroyo Grande Valley viticultural areas. We are making this proposal in response to a petition filed on behalf of the local grape growers and winemakers. 

See Docket No. TTB–2020–0009 at Regulations.gov for additional details and to submit comments electronically.

Virginia Peninsula. Notice No. 195.  The proposed 673,059-acre AVA is located in southeastern Virginia, and it is not located within any established viticultural area. We are making this proposal in response to a petition filed by a local winemaker.

See Docket No. TTB–2020–0010 at Regulations.gov for additional details and to submit comments electronically.

UPDATE ON IMPORTATION OF ALCOHOL BEVERAGES AND TOBACCO PRODUCTS OF CUBAN ORIGIN

We recently updated FAQ G11 and FAQ T18 to reflect federal policy changes related to Cuba. Effective September 24, 2020, travelers returning to the United States may no longer bring back with them alcohol beverages, cigars and other tobacco products of Cuban origin for personal use. The commercial importation of alcohol beverages, cigars and other tobacco products made in Cuba remains prohibited. You may contact the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the United States Department of the Treasury for additional information. See OFAC's Final Rule, "Cuban Assets Control Regulations" (September 24, 2020).

 

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