opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Little or nothing to do with distillation.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by OldManP » Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:19 pm

Any new updates in this venue?? I'm sure we'd all love to hear about how the legal side of things are working out for those folks working on their dreams?!

Pics are more than welcome!!!!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:42 pm

Where to start...
I was doing research and got so f$%^&ing fed up I quit. (Months later) I got the urge again to try a different route and still have run into constant roadblocks.
1) In NS if you brew under 15,000 hectolitres you are a micro brewery, if you brew over 15,000 you are commercial. Same with wine, under 15,000 you are "farm" and over, commercial. With distilling though it is commercial only. I've tried to get a straight answer on how to get this changed and like last time, "not my job call this person..who's on vacation. Then no not me call this person who's out sick for a week". Of course there are several problems with not being able to call myself micro, not the least of which all the permits and bonds etc are all geared towards thousands of gallons of alcohol per month.
$50,000 bond to store alcohol, $1,000 yearly permit just to run a distillery, etc

2) In Canada all alcohol is sold to the government who then places it in government liquor stores. This is good and bad. One block is I can't find minimum amount required or where to deliver. How I get paid for my product and is it paid up front or do I get paid as it sells. More digging to do.

3) Started doing a business plan again and crap I don't remember it being this hard in college! :oops: Talking to the business developement centre and they want me to borrow a couple million and become a seagrams, I want to retire and do this as a retirement/hobby/enjoy the business. You know MICRO-distillery. They want a 20 year old with a lifetime ahead of him to make product to ship out of the country. (told me all about how the states loves canadian whisky)

I'm going to get in touch with a couple wineries down in the valley and see if they would be interested in me making brandy for them with their wine. Knowing that they are smaller (respectively) wineries I was thinking of distilling for all of them, then thinking outside the box, I thought why not build an enclosed trailer 30ft long or so with the still inside? Show up at a winery and use their 220v power, they roll out the wine to the trailer and roll back in the brandy. Then I move on to the next winery up the road. (kind of a variation of what they do in some european countries with the town still)

Anyway, massive hill ahead just have to not get discouraged. Poured a couple drinks tonight for the wife and I and she again said how much she likes my "clean,smooth" whisky over store bought. Man I hate being the first and having to break trail. Micro's in N.B. PEI, Ontario, etc. Not in this stupid place...grrr
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Dnderhead » Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:00 pm

thank I seen ya snooping :)

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by rubber duck » Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:08 pm

Dnderhead wrote:thank I seen ya snooping :)
Me to :wink: Some of those folks can sure be uppity pecker heads.
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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Tue Feb 09, 2010 8:43 am

HOLY CRAP! And out of the blue, BOOM a micro-distillery opens in Nova Scotia!!

http://www.southshorenow.ca/archives/20 ... /index.php" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" rel="nofollow

"It's really a phenomenon that's happening in the U.S.," he explains. "I brought it home to Lynne and said, 'Hey, this kind of meets all our needs.' One, it's hands on, it's not an enterprise we have any ambition to grow into any kind of monolithic enterprise, and it's very much handcrafted, which was the criteria. And it was something we could experiment with and play with and get to live in a marvelous environment."
I have to drive down and talk to them and figure out how they got around some rules. One that boggles me is the fact that you must sell all liquor in NS to the liquor board who then sells it in liquor stores. And yet they are selling it in the front shop???

The front section of the shop will retain the ambiance and the history of the smaller forge and is currently being converted to retail space where the bulk of the company's product will be sold.

"We hope to have some products in the NSLC [Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation] so we can distribute them more widely," he explains. "But the margins are better if we sell it ourselves, plus we have this marvelous venue to do so."



AWESOME! I hope they sell all they can make! (retirement from the army is looking better all the time) 8)


Nova Scotia travel media:
Lunenburg’s newest attraction, Ironworks Distillery, will open its doors to the public in April 2010. Using local produce such as Annapolis Valley apples, they are producing apple-based vodka and will also be using local pears, strawberries, peaches and cranberries for high end brandies and liqueurs. And naturally they are creating their version of the “Lunenburg Rum” by fermenting Crosby’s molasses.
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Tue Feb 09, 2010 9:18 am

Checking around...

http://www.rumpundit.com/2009/12/11/novia-scotia-rum/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" rel="nofollow
Ironworks is aiming to produce about 5,000 litres of premium spirits a year.

“What attracts us to it is the fact that it is sustainable at a smaller size,” Mr. Guevremont said.

“There are no grand plans to take on Seagram’s.”

Well that sounds good to me too....then I read this line.....The couple has sunk about $750,000 into the distillery, Mr. Guevremont said. :shock: :shock:


Awww crap...my idea's were ahhh, umm, a little less flamboyant you could say! :oops:

Well they bought an industrial building downtown..and they're buying a new still from germany...bottles and label cost up front...and...

I'm sure I could do it cheaper than that..but hopefully not "appear" cheaper than that. (more work on the business plan)
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Dnderhead » Tue Feb 09, 2010 10:05 am

I found that most small distilleries do not make that much money, they are more of a "hobby'" that "hopefully" pay for them selves (this takes about 5 years)

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Wed Feb 10, 2010 9:23 am

That's what I was thinking. With $750,000 in debt starting out, what the hell do they expect their return on investment to be? Who lent them that much capital with the outlook of "aww shucks, we're already profitable if you include the fun we're having".
I honestly wish them the best but can't help to wonder if they'll be around in 5 years.
I know you can't believe everything you read, but if they decided to make rum after 450 people asked about it...what did they have for a marketing plan and what kind of market anaysis did they do? Opening a distillery and yet not know what the local area will support or want?:shock:

I can't wait to go and meet them, I've got a million questions I just hope they are open and willing to talk a bit. Perhaps you have to walk in to town council with the "cure for cancer" to get funding/approvals I don't know, but man for a "micro" distillery, they seem to have stepped in quite deep.

They expect to sell their rum for $35-40 per 375ml! :esurprised: Good for them but new on the market and expect premium prices? And if they've dropped 750,000 into the place, how much do they have to sell a month to break even? They said they only want to sell so many gallons of alcohol a year...um..the bank might have a different view there eh?

Like I said, when I get to meet them and see what is involved in the day to day operations of a legal distillery i might either be really pumped...or really bummed. :)
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Barney Fife » Wed Feb 10, 2010 10:15 am

GB, have you ever run a business? Started one up?

First thing anyone will tell you is to not expect a profit for the first 5 years. All you can hope for is to break-even in those first 5, using borrowed money for living expenses when times get tight. But you are paying down debt in those years, building inventory, building the brand, and building a client base. That initial $750,000 doesn't get paid off in one year, or even 5 years. Find em a business that can pay off its startup capital in under 5 years, and I'm in, because that means in the next 5 I can expect to pocket the same amount, over and above what I had made in the first 5, because if I was able to pay off the startup capital, I was also able to play myself a good wage!

Back to the micro-distillery, lets' say they will get $20(wholesale now, remember) for their 750ml bottles. And let's say they need to gross $200,000 per year to cover expenses and pay down the dept at the agreed-to rate(5, 10, or 15 year bank note). Do that math. Taking 2 weeks "off" in each year for maintenance/upgrades, they only need to make 4.8 gallons of product each day. That's a micro-distillery by anyone's definition. They would only be filling a barrel every week and a half. They only need to sell 7 bottles each day. Seven 750ml bottles per day.

Now, simply double the output to 10 gallons per day, and you're filling the barrel in 4-1/2 days. Still pretty low output, but now you've got a gross income of $400,000. Still only 14 bottle each day. Depending on your storage solution(warehouse) and manpower requirements, there is a sweet spot where economy of scale will be most favorable. Perhaps it will be smaller, but likely, it will be higher; much higher than you expected.

Hope those folks are open to helping you out, and keep us posted!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by squidd » Sun Feb 14, 2010 7:30 pm

$200,000 a year?

Hmm, let's see.

50 weeks a year (2 weeks off for maintenance) x 7 days a week = 350 days
7 bottles a day @ $20 a bottle = $140 a day
350 days @ $140 a day = $49,000

my math must be wrong.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Dnderhead » Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:02 pm

If that bottle sold for 20$ in the store,you whould be lucky to make 5$ in profit.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Barney Fife » Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:36 pm

Just messing with gross here, dnder..., and I used $20/bottle based on the idea that they'd sell for $40 at retail.

Yes, my math was wrong; good catch. No idea where I messed up, but I obviously missed by a factor of 4. It works out to 28(twenty eight) 750ml bottles per day. Still a micro anything in the real world, and my point still holds. I suspect anyone inquiring on a distilling license on that small of a production "goal" won't be taken seriously.

EDIT: I now see GB said they expect to get $40 per 375ml, not per 750..., so, if they get $20/375ml at wholesale, that's $53.33 per liter, which means they need to make 3750 liters per year, or roughly 11liters of 40% ABV per day, which would be roughly 4-5 liters off the still per day. Very micro.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by rad14701 » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:35 am

Just my own personal opinion but if you aren't producing at least one or more full barrels per day you're just wasting time trying to go legit... That's roughly 100 gallons of barrel proof per day... Hobby sized stills just aren't going to cut it... Factor onto that your aging time while still running production until aging is completed and you have a lot of incurred debt and time before you can make your first sale... And then there are the taxes... Any business plan needs to include these factors along with all the rest... The easiest way around this is to have at least one line of product that doesn't require aging so you can generate income sooner...

Oh, the complexity... :?
If it was easy, everyone would be doing it... :roll:

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by RefluxFan » Mon Feb 15, 2010 12:08 pm

What's happened to UJ's new venture?

I only found this thread last night and took a couple of hours to read it (most of it, skipped a couple of lines here and there), but I can't view any pictures, they just say "image" and when I click the link(s) to UJ's site to have a look, it is full of advertising, but no booze.

Does anyone have a link that works, i'd like to look at UJ's distillery porn :lol:

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Husker » Mon Feb 15, 2010 5:35 pm

rad14701 wrote: That's roughly 100 gallons of barrel proof per day...
Let me simplify that to 100 proof gallons (100 gallons of 100 proof, not barrel strength). The taxes alone on that per day would run you about 1500. Keep in mind, that is PREPAID with a bond. So if you are talking running like that, for 100 days a year, then you have 150000 * 2 or 300k in tax bond alone to cover. Not to mention equipment, rent, and all the other biz expenses.

Stilling for profit is not a trivial game.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by pyratesurgeon » Thu Feb 18, 2010 11:05 pm

RefluxFan wrote:What's happened to UJ's new venture?

I only found this thread last night and took a couple of hours to read it (most of it, skipped a couple of lines here and there), but I can't view any pictures, they just say "image" and when I click the link(s) to UJ's site to have a look, it is full of advertising, but no booze.

Does anyone have a link that works, i'd like to look at UJ's distillery porn :lol:
Just google pioneer spirits. Looks like it based in Chico, CA....used to have some family that lived up in Cohasset Stage outside of that town. He truly has some copper shined up and worth drooling over. Would really like to sit down and have a chat with the lad on the b.s. he had to go through...
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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by RefluxFan » Fri Feb 19, 2010 1:02 am

Yep thanks. The links are up and working now, seems like a new site though, half the pages are under construction.
Nice stillin gear, I especially like the Tour Page.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Bohunk » Fri Feb 19, 2010 10:49 am

I have been following this thread for some time, several times thought about joining in, and then thought it was better to keep my mouth shut, but here is my thinking. We all want to do what we enjoy doing, and making liquor is what we all enjoy, but enjoying it isn’t enough. You have to have a market for your product, and that is the hard part. The big boys have most of the market, and they can operate cheaper than most of us, so it is hard to compete with them. I live in Nebraska, and if you have ever seen a NE football game on TV you would know these folks support there state. They love any thing that is made in their state, and will buy it even if they don’t need it. I opened the first distillery in this state, and have been blessed with overwhelming support, but that wouldn’t work every where. It took me one and a half years to jump through all the hoops and get my first product in the bottle, so you could expect a lot of hurdles in your path. I think if I were to do it again, I could do the process much faster, but I had to learn a lot of things the hard way. Any way as has been said before, it is a long hard process to get set up, and takes a while to see any return on your money. If you enjoy cooking a little booze, by all means do so, just don’t make any noise about it. I have been in contact with several TTB officials, and I ask them if they think there are any illegal stills running in the country, they just laugh and say “there are more today than ever, but we only go after those who get too big or try to sell some of there booze.” So, I guess what I’m trying to say is, have fun, and don’t make too much noise about it, and I don’t think anyone will ever bother you, but it you do plan to start a legal operation good luck, and remember it was more fun to dream about than to do.

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Fri Feb 19, 2010 12:51 pm

I've deleted and started this post 4 times now.

No I've never had a business but my wife has been self employed for the last 17 years with my postings every 3-4 years. We have a Chartered accountant who does all our taxes etc and a lawyer too. The fact that a micro distillery opened up here is awesome but I have to talk to them to find out more.
Worse case scenario, I put time and effort into finding out that a distillery is not the small business for me. I know there is a crap load of rules/regulations and because of it might make it not financially feasable to operate below X gallons of whisky per day/month/year.

I really enjoy the thought of retiring after 28 years in the army and running my own business. I love dragracing and building hotrods/dragcars/4x4's hell I can pretty much do anything and thought of starting a hotrod garage of some sort. But, I'm finding my body is pretty beat to hell and rolling around the floor on a customers car wouldn't be as fun as driving a still. I certainly have no problem running my own little operation for my own satisfaction...but I'd love to go legal.

Barney, perhaps it's my inexperience, but my idea would be to build my own building on my own property (zoned for business of course) and buy a piece here and a piece there. I'm thinking a 100-200L still would be as big as I need. I would make that myself as well. Basically, unless it's really required (bond expenses etc) I'd rather not borrow any or not much money.
Crap gotta go
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by LWTCS » Fri Feb 19, 2010 1:59 pm

goinbroke2 wrote: my idea would be to build my own building on my own property (zoned for business of course) and buy a piece here and a piece there. I'm thinking a 100-200L still would be as big as I need. I would make that myself as well. Basically, unless it's really required (bond expenses etc) I'd rather not borrow any or not much money.
That sounds real nice GB.

Sure would be nice to have enough "phuk U" money to do just that.

Create a very cool "boutique" store front. Maybe partner up with some other boutique venders and create a store with a variety of,,,,,,,Artisan goods.

Live in a nice aptartment above the storefront. No driving to work.

Nice dream for me. But I got no....................
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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:29 pm

I'm back...

So, a $50,000 bond is $600 if I remeber correctly, or something like that. The permits piss me off because it's $1000 for any size distillery. Got to work on that or see if that's what they paid at Ironworks distillery.

I know in the states there are laws reference how far you must be from a personal structure and requirement of sprinklers etc but again that is only in certain states. In a different country it could be totally different. I'm to the point now when asking questions that I'm not shy at all (not sure if this is good or bad) I just ask as if I'm opening any other business. There is no nudge nudge wink wink at all. Most (in government who do answer) are very professional even if they are not helpful due to not knowing.

One other thing I've been thinking about is which products. I was thinking of vodka made from filtered GNS like some do but am leaning towards making a product called "moonshine". This would be my immediate revenue stream with whisky being 3 years later as per reg's. There is already a "Salty dog distillery" in PEI which sells it's version of PEI Moonshine. It is more of a tourist trap province and I would imagine a lot of people travelling down east for vacation would have to take a bottle of maritime moonshine back to Ontario. (kinda like every second vehicle on the road with Ontario plates has a lobster trap strapped to the roof) :roll:

Anyway....still asking questions and doing the plan. When I open it won't be a Seagrams and I think it'll suprise people just how small and cheaply it can be done. (at this point $50,000 is ballpark)
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by NcHooch » Sun Feb 28, 2010 6:32 pm

I just ran across this thread here and had no idea some of yall were into commercial ventures .
Just wanted to say congrats on wading through all the red tape and making your dreams a reality.
I'll keep an eye out for the Pioneer brand next time I'm at the store.
cheers,
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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Thu Mar 11, 2010 8:57 am

Actually, it kind of proves a point that home distilling isn't some "criminal" thing and can actually lead to government revenue.
There has been several who started on their own then "went legal".
I won't name names, but if you want the best damn absinth available legally at a liquor store ..... :wink:

Hopefully I'll add my name to the list of those who started here then went on to open a legal distillery.
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by LWTCS » Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:17 pm

goinbroke2 wrote:Actually, it kind of proves a point that home distilling isn't some "criminal" thing and can actually lead to government revenue.
There has been several who started on their own then "went legal".
I won't name names, but if you want the best damn absinth available legally at a liquor store .....

Hopefully I'll add my name to the list of those who started here then went on to open a legal distillery.
Ya gotta start or create the talent pool some how. What the heck?
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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Sat Mar 20, 2010 11:15 am

Well, we went to the cottage for march break and in that time I squeezed a few hours to go visit Ironworks distillery. Holy crap! I am so gratefull to them for sitting and talking/touring/showing EVERYTHING about the distillery/setting it up/the legal side of it/etc/etc.

Basically I was given wrong info by the people I talked to. Either I talked to the wrong people or I didn't communicate very clearly.
So, Yes I can sell from a store front if it is attached to the distillery.
No there is no hazmat stipulations
There is no fire regulations because of alcohol storage
There is no regulations on effluent (they do apple brandy and their waste goes to the local compost dump)
The bond is $5000 (ouch) but covers any amount of alcohol
Permits/bond/fee's etc should total about $10,000 to $15,000 and your in business.

Basically there is no precident and micro distilling as it's all new. As such, the only business model to go by is the micro breweries and micro winery's. I have a name (Carol Andrews) who is THE person to talk to and they are pushing for as much new business as possible. They have had ZERO negative feedback since starting! The points she said to remember when talking to them is that your using LOCAL produce/products and get a "shtick" to sell on.

They also said that Nova Scotia is the easiest and least regulated in all of Canada. Their mentor who is helping them get going is in BC which is extremely regulated. They are not "officially" open yet, that will be in May. In the meantime they are getting stock ready and using two Amphora Society stills (200L). They have a huge wood fired still coming from Germany.
Their bottles are beutiful and came from France. Their yeast comes from Germany.

Awesome people, awesome set up. Much more but I gotta go.

I found my retirement job! :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

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Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by kiwistiller » Sat Mar 20, 2010 2:05 pm

were they using PDA 2's or something custom?
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Location: In the garage, either stilling or working on a dragster

Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by goinbroke2 » Wed Mar 24, 2010 3:43 pm

Sorry Kiwi, don't know why I didn't see your question sooner. :oops:

Yes they are PDA2's.

I have the official "list" to set up a distillery...aptly named "distillery checklist". :roll:
http://www.mynslc.com/Documents/DistilleryChecklist.doc" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" rel="nofollow

Some things I have to find out are where to buy the spirit hydrometer. Apparently I have to order one from a reputable dealer who then sends it directly to customs and excise. They test it and note the serial number then mail it to me.

I downloaded most of the reporting paperwork needed.

I have to find a place to insure my product. Not sure if they mean in case I poison somebody or if somebody steals it.

Not sure what they mean by "quality control"

I have to call and establish a selling price. (that includes the nslc mark up)

Overall, a bunch of legwork but nothing that can't be done without time/effort.

Need a "professional" name....Oh, speaking of names, I found out that there are several legal stills in the area I never knew about. One is at Jost Winery about 1/2 hour from here, he started making brandy and vodka about 2 years ago. There is also two girls in PEI making vodka from potatoes. This is an excellent hobby and when I'm legal and selling I will make sure I state that I started out in my home for personal consumption. Not sure what the statute of limitations is, but I will certainly push that when done right, it is safe. Also, the tax based revenue stream the government is collecting is because of a hobby that is illegal that gave the incentive to go legal. No I won't spout off to the news the first day I open, but I will openly encourage the viewing of "certain" sites that pertain to home distilling. :ewink:

The only downside is that I have many more people relying on me for racing info/help/advise then I realized. Although I've always lived for racing and seriously still enjoy it, it seems a bit of a distraction from my newest (not new) hobby. Just got off the phone with a guy recommending carb and intake choice for his application and before supper I had a call about camshafts. This on top of my being the tech inspector for Stock and SuperStock dragracing in all of the maritimes. (3 provinces) Then there's the kids "discovery club" I do thursday nights and choir and drama for the church too. Actually I'm the building maint man for our church too....wonder why I'm so busy all the time.... :lol:

Life is good.....busy but good
Numerous 57L kegs, some propane, one 220v electric with stilldragon controller. Keggle for all-Grain, two pot still tops for whisky, a 3" reflux with deflag for vodka. Coming up, a 4" perf plate column. Life is short, make whisky and drag race!

JethroBodine
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Posts: 232
Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 6:02 pm
Location: Sippin', Leaning-against-a-maple-tree, VT

Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by JethroBodine » Thu Jun 03, 2010 4:05 pm

Hey GB, Glad to hear you are going along this road, also. I've been working along the same road here in the States. I'm a long way from the light at the end of the tunnel, but things are moving along. My best advice is patience and perserverance. I recently attended my first State(VT) alcohol manufacturer seminar and am nearly pissing myself to get on the ball. I've found a local farmer who grows sweet corn and am looking for a location as I rent and have no land. I have a point of contact at the TTB, but I want a few more things in place before I start pestering THEM. I also just picked up Quickbooks to help with the book keeping. A friend is starting a winery( a little quicker than my operation) so I'll have his help with bond issues, insurance, liscensing, labeling,... So many things to do. Best of luck, and maybe in a couple years we can get together and sample each others LEGAL hooch( sooner would be better, but I don't think it will be much sooner than that for me). If you are up and running before me, I will definately show up with an empty shot glass. :mrgreen:
Master Bruce Lee said," The best style, is NO style."
I've had a LOT of practice at having no style.

rednose
Site Donor
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Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:07 pm

No easy biz at all

Post by rednose » Thu Jun 03, 2010 4:27 pm

Just wanna give a sight on what happens in a third world country.

Here I have to pay about 1000$ (depends on the quality of lawers you work with) for the sanitary permit to sell for each different product (beside of the official DSP licence).

That means for instance, I have a permit for an anis based likker and add some absinthe I have to have a new permit for it.

I have to pay a tax of about 6 USD for each content of a Ltr of pure 100% alc in any herb, sugar cane or fruit based likker and about 11 USD for each content of a Ltr for whiskey/ brandy/ vodka.

If the price without the tax and sells tax is more than 8$ a bottle I have to pay 40% additional tax for whatever is over the mentioned price.

As said before, it might be easy (or not) to produce a good commercial licor but the other part of the story is to compite with big boys, the promotion will cost a fortune (maybe more than the value of your lab) to have your product in the mind of consumers.

At the end it's a difficult, but in case you have all the tools in the hand, a possible lucrative biz.

I hope I can survive the big boys in the future but till now I have invested money that I can lose without changing my lifestile in the future. :wink:

Joe
Licensed Micro distillery "Bonanza"; fighting the local market

Zxlork
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Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 2:47 am

Re: opening a legal distillery in the U.S.

Post by Zxlork » Wed Jun 30, 2010 3:07 pm

Just found this thread yesterday and was a great read. I was really excited to see it was older because I could buy some spirits maybe even Brandy by now. But did some research and was very sad to read this article. http://liquorlocusts.com/passages-2010-pioneer-spirits" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" rel="nofollow

Sorry to hear Uncle Jesse. I know I'm still new to the forums but still saddens me.

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