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Homebrew Club Running a Nano-Brewery

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mtnrockhopper:
I've heard many stories about clubs serving 'publicly' and the situations seem to depend on mostly on state law, and somewhat on interpretation by the organizer, local ABC officials, and whether they are paying attention.  I would first start with a call to AHA to ask about California laws regarding homebrew at festivals. Some states explicitely allow this by law, some ban it by law, and most ignore it leaving it up to interpretation.

I'd be surpised if any club was interested in running a nano after the costs were accounted for. These also vary by state, but you'll need licenses, insurance, dedicated space, equipment. You'll probably get inspected. And then you'll pay tax on all that beer that you just want to give away. 

You were right not to participate in the festival this time. If you're not pouring, then you can't promote your club and homebrewing. For me, that is the only reason to do this.

bboy9000:
I went to the Heritage Beer festival in St. Louis last year and a local homebrew club had a similar issue.  They had kegs ready and were informed about some state law although it apparently was never enforced in the past.  They ended up serving soda pop.  If there's anyone on the forum from the St. Louis Brews homebrew club they could probably give more details on the situation they encountered.

Alewyfe:

--- Quote from: Slowbrew on March 03, 2013, 07:09:54 AM ---
--- Quote from: Alewyfe on March 02, 2013, 12:05:01 PM ---Our club was invited to pour at a local brewfest in 2011. According to the powers that be there was no problem as admission was free to the event. There was no admission charge, you only bought glasses and drink tickets and we did not require tickets for our beer.

The next year 2012, we were told we could not pour under the festivals liability insurance. We could however donate our kegs to the festival and they could dispense them for "paid tickets" the same as the commercial beers. This was apparently deemed to be OK as the festival was organized by and with proceeds going to a non-profit.

I think most of the rules are made by the local liquor commission rep depending on how they feel on any particular day. Without club members being able to pour at our own booth and talk to people about the club, etc., it has become very difficult to get members to participate in the festival. A lose:lose  situation for both us and the fest.

--- End quote ---

I know the whole situation is in the past but my first thought was the orginizers saw dollars being missed and wanted to increase the take.  Even if it goes to charity that seems a bit greedy to me.  I would also question wether homebrew can be donated and then sold.  Did the "donation" somehow satisfy the tax man?

Sorry your club lost the opportunity but it's probably best you didn't participate.

And for the record IANAL.  I'm just a sometimes grump guy with a tendency to see the bad side of people (especially before my first 3 cups of coffee).

Paul

--- End quote ---

I might be your sister Paul, because I saw it the exact same way. This particular festival is the biggest fund raiser for this PAC and I think the bottom line was all about $$$.  I too have no idea how the local LCC guy and the organizers figured if it was a non profit that it was OK to sell our beer. Why then wouldn't non profits be running breweries???....duh.

Slowbrew:

--- Quote from: Alewyfe on March 03, 2013, 09:11:05 AM ---

I might be your sister Paul, because I saw it the exact same way. This particular festival is the biggest fund raiser for this PAC and I think the bottom line was all about $$$.  I too have no idea how the local LCC guy and the organizers figured if it was a non profit that it was OK to sell our beer. Why then wouldn't non profits be running breweries???....duh.

--- End quote ---

I'm not sure I need a 5th sister.   :o

You might be able to replace a couple of them though.   My 3 brothers and would need to vote someone off the island.  ;D

Paul ;D

tschmidlin:
If your club has a relationship with a local brewery, you might be able to brew there.

Rogue's Issaquah Brewhouse has a small pilot system, one of my clubs brews on it occasionally and they put the beer on tap in the pub.  That is tax paid beer brewed on premises, just with different equipment, and would easily meet the requirements for any festival.

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