15.9.1 Wine The holder of a common “victualler” license (on-premise restaurant licensees as well as hotels and function halls which must serve food) may hold wine tastings on its licensed premises. Wine must be limited to one ounce (1 oz.) per serving, and food must be served in conjunction with any such tasting. [MA Law, Part I, Title XX, Chapter 138, Section 12.] The holder of an off-sale (package store) license may provide without charge, tastings to consumers of wine for sale at its licensed premises. No single serving of wine may exceed one ounce (1 oz.). An off-sale licensee also may conduct such tastings in restaurants or other places licensed under the provisions of Section 12 of the law[…]

Note: Suppliers are reminded that the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (FAA) and the Federal Regulations (Title 27 CFR) contain provisions governing trade practices and those provisions may be more restrictive than state law. Therefore, Federal law may limit some activities allowed by state law and regulations. When reviewing any of the trade practice sections contained in the State Digests, suppliers should consider Federal law as well.

There are no provisions requiring manufacturers, wholesalers or winegrowers to extend credit to any licensee. However, in the event credit is extended to wholesalers by manufacturers, wine growers or other suppliers, Chapter 138, Section 25, of the law states that no class of licensee may extend credit to any other class of licensee for more than sixty (60) days. [MA Law, Part I, Title XX, Chapter 138, Section 25.]

4.1 Price Posting/Quotations/Lead Times Price posting is required. A master posting reflecting the prices for all items sold in the state must be received by the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission no later than August 1st each year, to be effective September 1st. This is the only posting required during a twelve (12) month period if there are no changes. Otherwise, postings must be received by the Commission by the first of the month to be effective the first day of the following month—thirty (30) days lead time. If the first of the month falls on a weekend or legal holiday, the deadline is the next business day. Postings not received by the deadline will be rejected. Postings effective for months[…]

3.1 Product Approval Requirements Label registration is not required. 3.2 Container Deposit Requirements There are no container deposit requirements for distilled spirits or wine. The required minimum deposit for beer and malt beverages is $0.05 per container.

2.1 Company Licenses/Permits Note: Refer to section 14, Direct Shipments to Consumers and/or Retailers for more details (wine only). A Certificate of Compliance is required, and must be renewed annually prior to the expiration date of December 31. The cost is based on the number of cases sold in the state in a calendar year and is $200.00 for five thousand (5,000) cases or less and $500.00 for sales in excess of five thousand (5,000) cases a year. A separate Certificate of Compliance is required for each shipping location. Proof of FDA registration must be provided. [MA Law, Part I, Title XX, Chapter 138, Section 18B.] A Certificate of Compliance gives a supplier the right only to ship alcoholic beverages[…]

Two types of growlers may be sold in Massachusetts: “bottle growlers” and “large glass growlers.” A growler is a “bottle growler” when the brewer fills the container prior to the sale. A growler is a “large glass growler” when a consumer uses the container to make a purchase and the brewer then fills the container. Farmer-Breweries and Pub-Breweries may refill large glass growlers for consumers under the following conditions: The growler is devoid of any labeling of another brewery. The growler does not contain any alcoholic beverages. The growler is filled from a tank that is tax-determined beer, made by or for the Farmer-Brewery or the Pub-Brewery. [M.G.L. C 138, § 19C and § 19D.]

An “infusion” means a distilled spirit where ingredients, including but not limited to, fruits, spices, nuts, vegetables, etc., are added to naturally infuse flavor into the spirit. Infusions are permitted in Massachusetts. [Written advice from the Commission on February 1, 2016.]