This issue of Compliance Matters features informative articles on a variety of topics including: a new policy for Flavored Malt Beverages, and changes in policy regarding Malt Beverage label approvals.

In addition, this issue describes ATFs Treasury Decisions published in the Federal Register since January 1996.

This issue also contains the following Industry Circulars:

95-6: Use of Adjuncts by Brewers, 12/12/95
96-1: Flavors Containing Alcohol Added to Malt Beverages, 2/26/96



In response to the continued growth of flavored malt beverage products, ATF is revising the labeling policy regarding these products to better serve the needs of both the consumer and the malt beverage industry. The previous policy, as stated in Compliance Matters 94-2, required that, for flavored malt beverage products, any use of the terms "malt beverage", "beer", "lager beer", "lager", "ale", "porter", or "stout" as a part of the fanciful name must be preceded by the word "flavored" unless those products were produced only from the addition of juices, fruits, juice concentrates or other acceptable fermentable agricultural sources added prior to or during the fermentation process. For example, if cherry juice is added after fermentation, then the product would have had to have been labeled with a fanciful name such as "Cherry Flavored Beer."

The new policy eliminates this restriction and allows the use of these terms (beer, ale, porter, etc.) without the word "flavored" even in situations where the fermentable agricultural products are added after fermentation. Also, the word "flavored" will no longer be required to appear in conjunction with these terms when non-fermentable flavorings such as spices and flavors are added before, during or after fermentation. However, an important note at the end of this article discusses special cases in which use of the word "flavored" is still required.

For example, a malt beverage produced with the addition of cherry juice and/or cherry flavor before, during and/or after fermentation may use any of the following fanciful names; Cherry Ale, Cherry Flavored Ale, Cherry Brew, or Cherry Red, among others. Under the previous labeling policy, only those malt beverages which were produced with cherry juice which had been added before or during fermentation could be referred to as Cherry Ale.

As required by the regulations, in addition to the fanciful name, the labels of all flavored malt beverage products must bear a "truthful and adequate statement of composition". The following are examples of truthful and adequate statements of composition for various combinations of flavoring materials added at different stages in the production of a flavored malt beverage product.

1) The addition of fermentable and/or non-fermentable flavoring material before or during the fermentation process to produce a flavored beer.

a) Beer brewed (or fermented) with natural flavor(s).

b) Beer brewed (or fermented) with cherry juice and natural flavor.

c) Beer brewed (or fermented) with cherry juice.

2) The addition of fermentable and/or non-fermentable flavoring materials after the fermentation process to produce a flavored ale.

a) Ale with natural flavor(s).

b) Ale flavored with cherry juice and natural flavor.

c) Ale flavored with cherry juice.

3) The addition of fermentable and/or non-fermentable flavoring materials before, during and after the fermentation process to produce a flavored porter.

a) Porter brewed (or fermented) and flavored with natural flavor(s).

b) Porter brewed (or fermented) with natural flavor(s) and flavored with cherry juice.

c) Porter brewed (or fermented) and flavored with cherry juice.

d) Porter brewed (or fermented) with cherry juice and natural flavor(s) and flavored with cherry juice.

e) Porter brewed (or fermented) with cherry juice and natural flavor(s) with natural flavor(s) added.

NOTE: ATF will continue not approving the use of fanciful names for malt beverages which include recognized class and types of distilled spirits or wine products (e.g., "Whisky Beer", "Whisky Flavored Beer", "Pinot Noir Porter" or "Pinot Noir Flavored Porter").

In addition, ATF will continue not approving, as part of the fanciful name, the unmodified use of terms such as "Piña Colada", "Margarita", or "Sangria". Although these are not recognized as distinct class and types, they are understood by the consumer to be distilled spirits or wine based products. Flavored malt beverage products of this type must contain a margarita flavor, piña colada flavor, or sangria flavor and may only use these terms as a part of the fanciful name provided that the word "flavored" clearly appears as a part of the fanciful name (e.g., "Piña Colada Flavored Malt Beverage", "Margarita Flavored Malt Beverage", "Sangria Flavored Malt Beverage" etc.). This is in addition to the required statement of process.

For a related item, see the article on Rye Beer which appears on page 5 of this issue of Compliance Matters.



The truthful and adequate statement of composition required for any wine, beer or distilled spirits specialty product is an abbreviated list of ingredients. Generally, this list of ingredients must note a standard of identity (class and type designation) of the alcoholic beverage(s) used in the product, the presence of any flavor(s) and the presence of any color additives.

Example: A distilled spirits specialty formula consists of the following ingredients:

  Grain neutral spirits 60.00%
  Natural Cherry Flavor 1.30%
  Natural Peach Flavor 0.20%
  Caramel Color 0.10%
  Water 38.40%

A truthful and adequate statement of composition for the above formulation would be "grain neutral spirits, natural flavors and artificial color".

If the producer wished to emphasize the presence of one of the components, such as the natural cherry flavor, it would have to make a complete disclosure of any other similar component such as the natural peach flavor, in order not to mislead or deceive the consumer. The required statement of composition would be "grain neutral spirits, natural cherry and peach flavors, and artificial color". Another acceptable statement of composition would be "grain neutral spirits, cherry and other natural flavor, and artificial color".

An unacceptable statement of composition would be "grain neutral spirits, natural cherry flavor and artificial color".



In recent years, the malt beverage industry has developed a number of products which are flavored to make them taste similar to distilled spirits products. For example, there are piña colada flavored malt beverage products. ATF has not approved labels for these types of products if the labels included pictures of glasses traditionally used to serve distilled spirits products; this policy was based on a concern that such depictions would be misleading to consumers.

ATF has reevaluated this policy in light of comments we have received from industry members and changes in the marketplace. We will no longer reject such labels provided (a) the labels clearly state in readily legible letters and in direct conjunction to the picture of the glass that the product is a flavored malt beverage and (b) there are no other factors which, when considered with the picture, make the labels misleading.

This policy change applies only to malt beverage products and does not apply to wine products. The prohibitions noted at 27 CFR 4.39(a)(7) prohibit such depictions for wine products. In addition, 27 CFR 4.39(a)(9) prohibits use of any brand name or class and type designation which is the name of a distilled spirits product or which simulates, imitates or creates the impression that the wine so labeled is, or is similar to, any product customarily made with a distilled spirits base. [See also the article "New Policy for Flavored Malt Beverages", which appears on page 1 of this issue of Compliance Matters.]



Malt beverage labeling regulations (27 CFR 7.29(g)) limit the use of numerals on malt beverage labels where such numerals are likely to be considered as statements of alcohol content. Such numerals may appear on malt beverage labels only where they are required by state law or as permitted by 27 CFR 7.71.

The Supreme Court decision in the case Rubin vs. Coors Brewing Company, 115 S. Ct. 1585 (1995) allows industry members to provide consumers with truthful, verifiable numerical statements of the alcoholic strength of their products. However, it also recognizes a legitimate government role in preventing industry members from competing with each other on the basis of alcoholic strength. Current interim regulations (27 CFR 7.71) pre-scribe the ways in which numerical statements of alcoholic content may be depicted on malt beverage labels.

Use of numerals beyond a strictly informative statement of alcohol content (per §7.71) may go beyond the level of informing. ATF will look at each label individually and determine whether it violates or complies with §§ 7.29(g) and 7.71. We will determine whether a brand or fanciful name (or other numerals on a label) are likely to be taken as claims of alcohol content which are not permitted by §§ 7.29(g) and 7.71. Although we will consider each label individually, following are general guidelines which may assist industry members in designing labels.

1) We will continue to approve malt beverage labels which contain numbers in the brand name or fanciful name if those numbers are high enough so that they are not likely to be taken as alcoholic contents. Generally, if the number is over 30 and other material on the label does not work with the number to make a strength claim, we will approve the label.

2) If a number is under 30, we are concerned that consumers will be likely to take it as a statement of alcoholic strength. Where there is such a number, ATF will request information about the actual percentage of alcohol in the product. If the number does reflect the actual alcoholic strength or is close to the alcoholic strength, the label will not be approved. In this situation we consider the number to be either a statement of actual alcohol content not in compliance with the provisions of §7.71, or as a false representation of alcohol strength when it approximates an actual alcohol content.

3) Where a malt beverage label has a number which is lower than 30 and the number does not reflect or come close to the actual alcoholic strength, ATF will determine whether there is other material on the label which provides a context for the number which eliminates the likelihood that the number will be taken as a statement of alcoholic content. An example of a label we would be likely to approve is one for a product called "Lucky 7" which includes a picture of dice and other gambling information.

4) When a number is low (under 30), and there is no other clarifying information on the label, but there is also nothing on the label other than the number which could be seen as having strength implications, we will request advertising and point of sale information to see how the product is to be promoted. If these show no strength message, we may approve the label but will include the qualification noted in item 5, below, on the Certificate of Label Approval (COLA). If the advertising and point of sale materials have not yet been developed and are therefore not available, we will request a letter from the brewer or importer stating that there will be no strength message in their future advertising and point of sale materials, and, if it provides such a letter, we will qualify the COLA as discussed in item 5, below. The presence of the actual alcohol content on the label may help dispel the notion that a number is a strength claim if in fact the number is not the same as or close to the actual percentage of alcohol.

5) Whenever we approve a label which includes numbers in the name or fanciful name, we will include the following in the "Qualifications" section of the COLA: "ATF will evaluate advertising materials which promote this malt beverage product to ensure that the numbers in the brand or fanciful name are not being used to promote the product on the basis of alcohol strength."



ATF has determined that a malt beverage product may be labeled as rye beer if the fermentable base consists of 5% malted rye with or without the addition of unmalted or flaked rye before, during or after fermentation.

ATF will evaluate, on a case by case basis, whether products brewed with less than 5% malted rye grain, may be labeled as Rye Beer.

This evaluation will require the submission of samples (a six pack is preferred) and a statement of process to Product Compliance Branch.

NOTE: A statement of process must accompany all applications for COLA approval of a product labeled as Rye Beer.



When industry members submit applications for label approval to Product Compliance Branch, they must include the correct vendor code. Industry members who makes a submission with an incorrect code, will be advised of the error. If they repeatedly use incorrect codes, their submissions will be returned for correction. If you have a question about vendor codes, please call the specialist who handles your label applications at (202) 927-8140.



  • Please do not use staples to affix any material to "Application for and Certification/Exemption of Label Approval". Please use tape or glue.
  • Please be sure to include your permit or registration number in item 3 on the Certificate of Label Approval.



In recent years, we have encountered a number of alcoholic beverage products which are intended to be marketed or consumed in other than the traditional liquid state generally associated with alcoholic beverages. These products are subject to the same provisions that govern the production, packaging and labeling of traditional wines, distilled spirits and malt beverages. Generally, to ensure appropriate classification and labeling, non-liquid alcoholic beverages must be analyzed by the ATF laboratory before issuance of an approved formula, statement of process or certificate of label approval (COLA). Similarly, the proposed packaging and packaging materials must be reviewed prior to issuance of a COLA. Points of particular concern with non-liquid alcoholic beverages are:

1) Such products must be packaged in standards of fill which comply with the applicable regulations.

2) Labels must be firmly affixed to containers/packages so as to be removable only with solvent.

3) All packaging materials must be FDA-approved for the packaging of alcoholic beverages.

4) For non-liquid distilled spirits products, packaging must include tamper-evident closures.



The Product Compliance Branch is in the process of developing a labeling manual which will provide guidance to industry members on a wide range of issues regarding the labeling of beverage alcohol and related topics. To provide the information to our customers as promptly as possible, we will issue the manual in parts, releasing sections as they are completed. The first section will deal with basic labeling requirements and prohibitions; we plan to release this in 1997. Future sections will deal with more difficult, complex and unique issues. In addition to releasing hard copies of the manual, we plan to make it available on the Internet.

We welcome your input on topics we should include in the manual. What labeling issues have caused you problems or confusion in the past or are causing you problems or confusions at present? Please send your suggestions to:

Product Compliance Branch
ATTN: Lynne Gittes, room 5240
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
650 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20226
*ATTENTION: To Wine Importers, Taxpaid Wine Bottling Houses,
and Others Concerned*


The purpose of this letter is to advise you of recent and temporary changes affecting the use of Chilean appellations of origin on labels of Chilean wine imported in bulk and bottled in the United States. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), in cooperation with the Government of Chile, has established temporary procedures to enable bottlers of bulk Chilean wine bottled in the United States to list certain Chilean appellations on their labels.

As background, the Federal Alcohol Administration (FAA) Act regulations state that an imported wine may claim a foreign appellation of origin if, among other things, it "... conforms to the requirements of the foreign laws and regulations governing the composition, method of production, and designation of wines available for consumption in the country of origin ..." [See 27 CFR 4.25a(b)(2)(ii), (e)(1)(ii), and (e)(3)(iii).] Thus, an imported wine may have a foreign appellation if and only if it could legally carry that appellation when sold in the country the wine comes from.

On May 26, 1995, the Republic of Chile published regulations requiring that, to have a Chilean appellation of origin smaller than "Chile" (e.g., a viticultural area, state, region, etc.), the wine must be bottled in Chile. There-fore, Chilean wine imported in bulk and bottled in the U.S. may only be labeled with the national appellation of "Chile". This has led to some confusion on the part of U.S. importers and bottlers who have recently purchased bulk wine produced in Chile with the intention of bottling the wine in the United States and labeling the wine with a Chilean appellation smaller than a country.

Under the temporary procedures, the Chilean Government will provide certification to exporters who wish to use particular appellations. This certification, which attests to a variety of items including that the wine was produced from grapes from the designated area, will apply only to the following five regions of Chile: Aconcagua, Atacama, Coquimbo, Valle Central, and Sur. To list one of these regions on the label, the wine must be entirely from that region. If labeled with a single grape varietal, the wine must be comprised of at least 75% of the labeled variety. Blending Chilean wine with other than Chilean wine eliminates the ability to label the wine with a Chilean appellation. Also, you should be aware that the bottling and blending of imported taxpaid wine, regardless of origin, must be completed at an authorized facility.

Chilean exporters and shippers should apply to the Chilean Agriculture Ministry for certification. Companies seeking certification should contact: Jefe, Subdepartamento Alcoholes y Vinas, Departamento de Proteccion Agricola, Servicio Agricola y Granadero (SAG), Avenida Bulnes 140, Santiago, Chile. This office can be reached by telephone on (56-2) 698-2244 or by fax on (56-2) 696-6480.

U.S. bottlers interested in obtaining temporary label approval to list one of the five regions mentioned above on Chilean wine bottled in the United States, should complete ATF Form 5100.31, Application for and Certification/Exemption of Label/Bottle Approval. The label application should be accompanied by a separate signed letter on company letterhead stating the number of cases to be bottled, the length of time necessary to complete the bottling, and that the wines to bear this label will be covered by an appropriate Chilean Government certificate. If granted, temporary label approval will be for a period sufficient to cover bottling once the wine is in the United States. The certificate issued by the Chilean Government (along with the English translation) should be retained by the bottler and be available for inspection by ATF for a period of at least 3 years. These certification procedures are scheduled to continue through December 31, 1997.

At this time, ATF does not expect to extend these temporary arrangements beyond December 31, 1997. If this is not permanently resolved, ATF will determine what action should be taken on previously approved labels which no longer conform to the pertinent regulations.

Please direct any questions regarding this matter to the Product Compliance Branch, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, 650 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Room 5200, Washington, DC 20226. This office can also be reached by telephone on (202) 927-8140 or by fax on (202) 927-8605.



The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) has issued a final rule containing a list of approved prime grape variety names which may be used as the designation for American wines.

The rule also contains two other lists of alternative names which may be used as grape wine designations until January 1, 1997 or January 1, 1999. ATF believes the listing of approved names of grape varieties for American wines will help standardize wine label terminology and prevent consumer confusion by reducing the large number of synonyms currently used for labeling. The regulations will enable consumers to be better informed about wines and the grape varieties used to produce them.

This final rule was effective on February 7, 1996.

For more information on the final rule, see the Monday, January 8, 1996, edition of the Federal Register (T.D. ATF-370, 61 FR 522) or contact Charlie Bacon at (202) 927-8230.



ATF has amended the wine regulation, 27 CFR Part 24, to add the use of three new or modified wine treating processes and one new wine treating material.

The new or modified wine treating processes include the following:

1) Spinning cone column to reduce the ethyl alcohol content of wine or to produce dealcoholized wine;

2) Reverse osmosis and ion exchange used in combination in a closed system to remove excess volatile acidity from bulk wine; and

3) Ultrafiltration using transmembrane pressures of less than 200 pounds per square inch to the efficiency of this type of filtration process.

The new wine treating material added is urease enzyme which is used to lower the urea level in wine, thereby reducing the possibility of ethyl carbamate formation during wine storage.

Use of these three processes and one material will significantly benefit consumers and the wine industry by enabling industry members to exercise additional quality control in the production of their wine.

ATF determined that use of these new processes and materials will not alter the vinous character of the wine or pose any health, safety, or consumer deception problems.

ATF concluded that use of the new processes and materials complies with the statutory standard of good commercial practice and published a Treasury decision in the Thursday, May 9, 1996, edition of the Federal Register (T.D. ATF-371, 61 FR 21076) which authorizes the use of these processes and materials effective July 8, 1996.



The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has issued a Treasury decision extending the western border of the Paso Robles viticultural area in San Luis Obispo County, California. The current Paso Robles viticultural area was established on October 4, 1983, by the issuance of Treasury decision ATF -148 (48 FR 45241). This extension of the western border adds approximately 52,618 acres, of which 235 acres are being planted to vineyards.

For further information, see the June 13, 1996, edition of the Federal Register, (T.D. ATF-377, 61 FR 29952).



The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms announces a final rule establishing a viticultural area in the State of California to be known as "Malibu-Newton Canyon." The petition for this viticultural area was filed by Mr. George Rosenthal, President of Rancho Escondido, Inc.

The "Malibu-Newton Canyon" viticultural area comprises approximately 850 acres within Newton Canyon, a bowl-shaped valley located on the south-facing side of the Santa Monica Mountains. Vineyards currently within the proposed viticultural area are located on the Rancho Escondido Estate. Rancho Escondido is comprised of approximately 157 acres, all of which lie within the proposed area. Approximately 14 of these acres are planted with premium wine-producing vineyards. Varietals include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, and Petit Verdot. Currently, there are no wineries located within the proposed "Malibu-Newton Canyon" area.

ATF believes that the establishment of viticultural area names as appellations of origin in wine labeling and advertising allows wineries to designate the specific areas where the grapes used to make the wine were grown and enables consumers to better identify the wines they purchase.

For further information, see the June 13, 1996, edition of the Federal Register (T.D. ATF 375, 61 FR 29949) or contact David Brokaw (202) 927-8230.



In recent months, ATF has encountered several situations in which importers either imported wines in 200 milliliter bottles or had applied for approval of labels for 200 milliliter bottles. Importers should note that the only standard of fill authorized by 27 CFR 4.73 for wine bottled or packed on or after January 1, 1979, are:

  3 liters  1.5 liters  1 liter
  750 milliliters  500 milliliters 375 milliliters
  187 milliliters 100 milliliters 50 milliliters

Wine may also be bottled or packed in containers of 4 liters or larger if the containers are filled and labeled in quantities of even liters (4 liters, 5 liters, 6 liters, etc.)

ATF will not approve labels for or importation of any wine in 200 milliliter containers. Importers are cautioned that industry members who import products in such containers will be cited for violations of the laws and regulations and may be subject to sanctions associated therewith.



ATF wishes to remind industry members that, among other requirements, to qualify for use of an appellation of origin, a wine must conform to the laws and regulations of such place or region governing the composition, method of manufacture and designation of wines for home consumption. (see 27 CFR 4.25).

Example: Federal regulations require that at least 75% of the wines volume be derived from fruit or agricultural products grown in the place or region indicated by an appellation. However, if a state requires 100% fruit from that state for use of the states appellation, the Federal requirement would also be 100%.




The Alcohol and Tobacco Laboratory presented a paper entitled "Pesticides in Wine: An ATF Perspective" at the 32nd Annual Pesticide Residue Workshop of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, held in St. Petersburg, FL - July 16-19, 1995. The ATF presentation was scheduled on the opening day along with Environmental Protection Agency and United States Department of Agriculture to present an over-view of government pesticide programs. The ATF presentation was referenced throughout the meeting by other presenters for a well structured, innovative, and environmentally safe approach to pesticide monitoring in wine.

For information on our methology, please contact
Dr. Sumer Dugar, (301) 413-5227.



Some foreign governments either routinely or randomly require chemical analyses performed by an ATF certified laboratory as a condition of entry of wine and/or distilled spirits. The Alcohol and Tobacco Laboratory and the Alcohol Import-Export Branch manage the ATF Certified Chemist Program. The following laboratories are currently certified. The list of laboratories are reviewed and updated biannually.

Laboratories Certified by ATF for the Analysis of Wine for Export:

Beaulieu Vineyard
1960 South St. Helena Highway
Rutherford, CA 94573
1150 Bel Arbres Road
P.O. Box 227
Redwood Valley, CA 95470
Brown-Forman Beverages Worldwide
850 Dixie Highway (40210) 
P.O. Box 1080 
Louisville, KY 40201
Glen Ellen Winery-Carneros
21468 8th Street
Sonoma, CA 95476
Canandaigua Wine Co., Inc.
116 Buffalo Street 
Canandaigua, NY 14424-1086
Golden State Vintners
38558 Road 128
P.O. Box 39
Cutler, CA 93615
Canandaigua Wine Co., Inc.
Mission Bell Winery 
12667 Road 24 
P.O. Box 99 
Madera, CA 93639
Heublein, Inc.
430 New Park Avenue
West Hartford, CT 06110-1142
ETS Laboratories 
899A Adams Street 
St. Helena, CA 94574
Jos. E. Seagrams & Sons, Inc.
Weschester Technical Center
103 Corporate Park Drive
White Plains, NY 10604-3877
E & J Gallo Winery 
P.O. Box 1130 
Modesto, CA 95353 
Mogen David Wine Corporation
85 Bourne Street
Westfeld, NY 14787
Northwest Wine Consultants 
509 Merclyn Lane 
Zillah, WA 98953 
Mumm Napa Valley
8455 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA 94558
NYSSA Analytical Laboratories
3850 Ramada Dr., Suite D5 
Paso Robles, CA 93446 
Stimson Lane Ltd./Columbia Crest
Highway 221, 1 Mile North of Patterson
P.O. Box 231
Patterson, WA 99345-0231
Parducci Wine Cellars
501 Parducci Road 
Ukiah, CA 95482 
Sutter Home Winery, Inc.
P.O. Box 248
St. Helena, CA 94574 
Robert Mondavi Winery
P.O. Box 106 
Oakville, CA 94562 
Vinters International Co., Inc. 
A Division of Canadaigua Wine, Co., Inc.
800 South Alta Street 
P.O. Box 780 
Gonzales, CA 93926
Scott Laboratories, Inc.
P.O. Box 4559
Petaluma, CA 94955-4559 
P.O. Box 695
16003 Healdsburg Avenue 
Healdsburg, CA 95448
Sebastiani Vineyards
P.O. Box 1290 
Woodbridge, CA 95258
The Wine Group, Inc.
17000 East Highway 120
P.O. Box 897
Ripon, CA 95366
Silverado Vineyards 
6121 Silverado Trail 
Napa, CA 94558 
Wine World Estates
2000 Main Street
P.O. Box 111
St. Helena, CA 94574

Laboratories Certified by the ATF for the Analysis of Distilled Spirits for Export:

Barton Brands, Ltd. 
P.O. Box 788
Barton Road 
Bardstown, KY 40004
Jim Beam Brands Company
Highway 245
Clermont, KY 40110
Brown-Forman Beverages Worldwide
850 Dixie Highway (40210) 
P.O. Box 1080 
Louisville, KY 40201
Jos. E. Seagrams & Sons, Inc.
Westchester Technical Center
103 Corporate Park Drive
White Plains, NY 10604-3877
E & J Gallo Winery 
P.O. Box 1130 
Modesto, CA 95353
Leestown Company, Inc.
1001 Wilkinson Blvd.
Frankfort, KY 40601
Grain Processing Corporation
1600 Oregon Street 
P.O. Box 349
Muscatine, IA 52761-0349
United Distillers Production, Inc.
3860 Fitzgerald Road
P.O. Box 740010
Louisville, KY 40201
Heublein, Inc.
430 New Park Avenue
West Hartford, CT 06110-1142
P.O. Box 695
Healdsburg, CA 95448

For assistance and/or additional information, contact Mr. John Colozzi, Alcohol Import-Export Branch (202) 927-8110 or Dr. Sumer Dugar, Alcohol and Tobacco Laboratory (301) 413-5227.



The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms has announced its plan to combine its five technical services offices into one office. Technical services offices examine and process alcohol and tobacco permit applications, tax returns and deposits, and claims for businesses and individuals. The five offices are located in Philadelphia, Atlanta, Dallas, Cincinnati, and San Francisco.

The consolidated operation will realize cost savings and efficiencies over the present five locations. With the streamlined operation, ATF will continue to maintain a high level of service to businesses and individuals.

The plan transfers work from four of the technical services offices into the Cincinnati technical services office. ATF will transfer the work on a staggered schedule. All of the work transfers should be completed by September 2001. The transfer of work from Dallas technical services to Cincinnati was completed in January 1997. Atlanta office will follow in December 1997. The transfer of the San Francisco and Philadelphia operations should occur no later than September 2001. This schedule will allow ATF to transfer the work in an orderly manner and with a minimum of inconvenience to industry and the public.

Transfer of the technical service work from all four offices to the Cincinnati office has begun. The Cincinnati technical services office examines firearms and ammunition manufacturers excise tax returns and deposits from the entire country. Before any work is transferred, ATF will notify each permittee, claimant, or taxpayers affected by the change.



ATF Form 1678 (5530.5), "Formula and Process for Nonbeverage Product," has been revised and superseded by ATF Form 5154.1. This new form may be obtained from the ATF Distribution Center; telephone (703) 455-7801. Form 5154.1 is similar to Form 1678 but requests some additional information. The new forms should be used for future submissions. Existing approvals on Form 1678 will remain in effect.



The introduction of the new Form 5154. 1 will have no adverse effect on the "Partnership Formula Approval Process" (PFAP) program for alcoholic beverages. Users of PFAP will extract the same data for their "Flavor Ingredient Data Sheet" (FIDS) from form 5154.1 as they do from Form 1678. References in PFAP documentation will be amended to reflect this change at a future date.



The Liqueur Program, which provides for the pre-import approval of liqueurs without requiring a laboratory analysis, has been in effect for approximately 2 years. It is described in Compliance Matters 94-2. This program has reduced the use of laboratory resources and has significantly reduced the turnaround time for the processing of imported liqueurs.

As a result, ATF will expand this program to include imported wine, beer and distilled spirits specialty products. In addition to the information which is required for products under the liqueur program, the agricultural source and the proof at distillation of each of the spirits used in the wine and distilled spirits specialty products must be provided in the list of ingredients and method of manufacture.

Specialty products are those products which do not fall under prescribed standards of identity in 27 CFR Parts 4, 5 or 7. They require a fanciful name (distilled spirits and beer only) and a truthful and adequate statement of composition. These include cocktails, wine coolers, flavored malt beverages and other alcoholic beverages which are not designated as specific classes and/or types of alcoholic beverages. Whisky, White Table Wine and Porter are examples of specific classes and/or types which do not require statements of composition.

Importers who wish to submit specialty products for pre-import approval must provide a list of ingredients and method of manufacture on the producers letterhead together with a request, on their own letterhead, to have the specialty product processed without laboratory analysis. The material should be submitted to the formula and processing section at Product Compliance Branch.


Internet users can access ATF through the NSFNET network which is managed by the National Science Foundation. The domain address can be used to access this system.

If you have any questions regarding access to ATF issuances via Internet, please contact Michael Breen, Technology Planning Staff, at (202) 927-8388.

If you have any ideas or items of interest you would like to submit for consideration in a future issue of COMPLIANCE MATTERS or if you have any questions concerning articles contained in this publication please contact:

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms
Angela Shanks
Room 5000
650 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20226
(202) 927-8230