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July 31, 2007 

Treasury Department Proposes New Labeling Requirements for Wine, Beer and Distilled Spirits

U.S. importers of beer, wine and distilled spirits should be aware that the Treasury Department's Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in today's Federal Register that would require significant changes to the labeling and advertising of alcoholic beverages sold in the U.S.

The proposed rule would require a statement of alcohol content, expressed as a percentage of alcohol by volume, on all alcohol beverage products sold in the U.S. The NPRM would also require a "Serving Facts" panel to be included on alcohol beverage labels that is similar to the "Nutrition Facts" label required on food and beverage products. TTB proposes to have the "Serving Facts" label include information on the serving size, number of servings per container, statement of calories, carbohydrates, fat and protein. The proposed rule would also specify new reference serving sizes for wine, distilled spirits and malt beverages based on the amount of beverage customarily consumed as a single serving.

In order to minimize the cost of creating new labels, TTB proposes to have the new labeling requirements go into effect three years from the date the final rule is published in the Federal Register.

Public comments on the NPRM must be submitted to the TTB before October 29, 2007.

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