Wine & Alcohol

News & Analysis as of

Uncorked: Act 39 of 2016 Expands Wine Sales in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania wine enthusiasts rejoiced when, on June 8, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed into law PA House Bill 1690, now known as Act 39 of 2016 ("Act 39"). Act 39 made sweeping changes to Pennsylvania's Liquor Code, loosening...more

Copyright and Trademark Case Review: Wine, Vodka and a Little Karaoke

Copyright Opinions - Eleventh Circuit Seeks Florida High Court's Guidance on Pre-1972 Sound Recordings: Flo & Eddie, Inc. v. Sirius XM Radio, Inc., No. 15-13100 (11th Cir. June 29, 2016) - Anderson, J. In a suit...more

Table for Two: Food and Beverage Industries Face Common Challenges

Seeing the explosive growth of craft breweries, a long-time coffee producer considers expanding into the lucrative beer market. That migration to craft-beer production is part of a growing wave. Across the U.S., one to...more

The TTAB Delivers Another Blow to the Beer Industry in Denying Registration for Home Brewing Co.

Beer companies have been hit hard lately when trying to register trademarks. As recently reported on our liquor blog, a beer distributor was denied registration of a logo that featured a skyscraper resembling the Empire...more

Convenience Stores and Grocery Markets: Are You Ready to Sell Wine To Go?

As many Pennsylvania residents are now aware, on June 8, Governor Tom Wolf signed House Bill 1690 into law. More commonly known as Act 39, it becomes effective just days away – on August 8....more

Craft Brewers Scrap Over Catchy Names

The craft-beer industry is running low on names. There are more than 4,600 craft breweries in the U.S. – California leading the nation with over 500, according to the Brewer’s Association....more

The 95-year hangover: What R v Comeau means for Canadian internal trade

The recent New Brunswick Provincial Court decision of R v. Comeau1 illustrates how one man seeking cheaper beer may create huge uncertainty in the laws governing inter-provincial trade of alcoholic beverages. In this case,...more

Brewery Count Reaches Historic High

Craft brewers are still growing, according to new mid-year data released by the Brewers Association (BA), the not-for-profit trade association dedicated to small and independent American brewers. American craft beer...more

Unfair Competition in the Wine Industry

California counties are increasingly using California’s Unfair Competition Law (UCL) to bring government enforcement actions against local businesses for myriad reasons. California’s UCL is extremely broad, encompassing...more

Trademarks in Building Designs

Think twice before including a landmark building on your product packaging. That’s the lesson of a recent case in the U.S. Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”). There the applicant, a producer of...more

Act 39 of 2016: RAMP and Surcharge Changes Applicable to all License Holders - NMM Liquor Law Blog

On June 13, 2016, Governor Wolf signed into law House Bill 1690, otherwise known as Act 39 of 2016, which is considered one of the most significant liquor reform bills since Prohibition. Today’s blog, a continuation of our...more

Liquor Control Board Weighs in on Alcohol Law Changes in Pennsylvania

Of particular interest to Pennsylvania residents and those doing business in the Commonwealth is the focus on expanding the location and availability of alcohol beyond traditional licensees. A month after Act 39 of 2016...more

(TAP)ping into the NJ Craft Brewery Market

One of the most challenging circumstances our clients face is having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars finding a suitable building for brewing and fitting out their new space, and the start of operating costs, meanwhile...more

What You Need to Know About the New Liquor Law

The law removes certain restrictions on the hours during which Pennsylvania Liquor Stores can sell alcohol, instead giving the Board the discretion to determine the appropriate hours for retail sales. For example,...more

North Carolina Legislature Adjourns for 2016 with No Major Changes to ABC Laws

The North Carolina General Assembly adjourned for 2016 with no major changes to North Carolina’s alcohol laws. North Carolina legislation that allows wine shippers to file excise tax reports on an annual basis, rather...more

Pennsylvania Revisits its Age-Old Liquor Laws

On June 8, 2016, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed a bill into law that will broaden the liquor laws in the state. Scheduled to go into effect in early August 2016, the bill contains something for a broad range of...more

Less Whine, More Wine: HB 1690 Loosens Restrictions on Direct to Consumer Shipping for Wineries

On June 13, 2016, Governor Wolf signed into law House Bill 1690, which is considered one of the more significant liquor reform bills in Pennsylvania since Prohibition. Today’s blog is a continuation of our series that...more

New Changes to Florida Beverage Laws Started July 1st

Changes to Florida’s Beverage Laws have drawn attention and controversy over recent years as groups ranging from small craft breweries to major retail vendors have lobbied for legislative amendments to the State’s...more

A Duel Over DUO Leaves Only Uno

The never-ending battle at the Trademark Office over trademarks for beer and wine suffered another casualty last week, this time over the mark DUO. Applicant Uinta Brewing Company filed a use-based application to register...more

MAYA And MAYARI Are Not Confusingly Similar When Used On Wine

The Federal Circuit has upheld the findings of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board that use of the marks MAYA and MAYARI on wine is not likely to cause confusion. Oakville Hills Cellar, Inc. vs. Georgallis Holdings, LLC,...more

Grapes, Girls and Goddesses: Federal Circuit Affirms MAYARI Trademark Registration For Wine

In our annual Trademark Year in Wine and Beer, we discussed Oakville Hills Cellar v. Georgallis Holdings LLC, in which the application of Georgallis (doing business as Kissos Wines) to register MAYARI for wine was opposed by...more

Barflies or Worker Bees: Alcohol at Work, What’s the Deal?

Seyfarth Synopsis: Is the glass half full (of perks) or half empty (with liabilities) for employers who serve alcohol in the workplace? Various California laws implicate the practice of providing alcohol for employees at...more

New Pennsylvania HB 1690: The Cidery Dilemma

As promised, I will continue to outline nuances of the new changes to the Pennsylvania Liquor Code and choices that consumers, manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers can make. HB 1690 will become effective in early August...more

Food & Beverage Alert: Compromise Reached on NY Brunch Bill

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has reached a compromise with state legislators that will allow restaurants and bars to serve alcohol on Sunday mornings, starting at 10 a.m. In addition, restaurants and bars outside New York...more

State Safe Harbor Doctrines: A Life Preserver from False Advertising Claims Facing Alcohol Manufacturers?

Food and beverage companies, beset by lawsuits about their product labels, struggle to find consistent application of consumer protection laws across the country. The experience of one distiller and its use of one word on its...more

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