Sen. Tom Whatley, R-Auburn, has introduced legislation to help small farm wineries legally sell their products at retail stores.
Under existing law, producers of alcoholic beverages may only sell to distributors or directly to consumers in limited quantities at the production facility. SB 234 would allow wineries licensed by the Alcohol Beverage Control Board to self-distribute table wines to licensed retailers and sell directly to consumers.
The legislation defines a “small winery” as one that produces less than 100,000 gallons of table wine a year and uses at least 50% fruit grown in Alabama or has at least five acres dedicated to growing fruit. It also requires at least 50% of the wine to be produced at the winery location. Small farm wineries would be required to collect and remit applicable taxes.
The bill has been assigned to the Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee, which Whatley chairs.