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Drawback Tutorial

Submitting samples with formulas

The following guidelines should help the submitter decide when it is appropriate to send a sample of their product along with their formula submission (TTB Form 5154.1 or Formulas Online). Sending a sample when it is not required adds unnecessary burden to the Lab and is an unnecessary cost to you. 

When needed, submit a 2 fl. oz. (30 mL) sample of a liquid product and a 4 oz. (110 g) sample of a solid product. Frozen products should be shipped such that they remain frozen. Use of dry ice and expedited shipping (e.g. overnight) is recommended, with delivery ideally occurring Mon-Thu. Samples should be sent to:
Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau
Nonbeverage Products Laboratory
6000 Ammendale Road
Beltsville, MD 20705-1250

**Please note that all shipping and handling costs are the responsibility of the submitter/shipper. If SSD receives an invoice from your company, all submissions will be placed on hold until the invoice has been paid.**

You should not send a sample when:

  • The product does not contain ethanol regardless of where the product is manufactured.
  • The formula shows that the product meets the TTB guidelines as outlined in the section describing what makes a product unfit (for products manufactured in the United States).

You should send a sample when:

  • The formula does not list significant amounts of flavor chemicals.
  • The formula only contains essences, concentrates, or extracts.
  • The formula contains less than 10% by weight essential oil in a washed extract.
  • The formula contains mitigating ingredients such as sugar, high fructose corn syrup, glycerin, or juices and does not meet the TTB guidelines as outlined in the section describing what makes a product unfit.
  • The product is not manufactured in the United States (even if unfit by TTB guidelines).
  • The product is a sauce/syrup - ethanol is not more than 12% (v/v) and residual solids greater than or equal to 60 grams per 100 cubic centimeters.
  • The product is a vanilla extract of any fold that is manufactured from vanilla beans, or a 1 or 2 fold vanilla extract that contains greater than 45% alcohol by volume.
  • The product is brandied fruit.
  • The product is a frozen product, such as an ice cream or water ice.
  • The product is a bitters.
  • The product is a dietary supplement.
  • The product is a homeopathic product that is at a potency greater than 5X.
  • When requested by TTB.

Note: The submitter should list the specific chemical(s) that make the product unfit on the form.  This could eliminate the need to submit a sample.


Page last reviewed: February 16, 2018
Page last updated: October 19, 2022
Maintained by: Scientific Services Division