Today, Governor Jay Inslee issued a statewide emergency proclamation ordering a statewide closure of all on-site food or beverage services, including on-site and off-site brewery, winery, and distillery taprooms and tasting rooms. Washington producers may continue their production operations, but in-person tastings, dining, and events will be prohibited until at least the end of March. In this alert Stoel Rives’ beverage attorneys explain how Washington producers can sell alcohol beverages “to-go” or offer delivery services.
Producer To-Go Sales
Licensed producers of beer, cider, distilled spirits and wine may continue to sell their alcohol beverage products for off-premises consumption directly to consumers at the licensed premises, provided that the business follows the Governor’s statewide guidance for social distancing in retail stores, which includes ensuring adequate environmental cleaning of stores and designating an employee or officer to implement a social distancing plan for the business. In-store tastings are not permitted. Taprooms and tasting rooms that sell food may provide take-out services of food and alcohol beverages, and there is no minimum ratio of food to alcohol beverages.
Internet Sales and Deliveries
In addition to making to-go sales, any licensed brewery, distiller or winery is allowed to make phone and internet sales and deliveries of beer, cider, distilled spirits or wine (including through food delivery apps) after notifying the WSLCB in writing of the desire to engage in internet sales.
If you’re thinking about taking sales over the internet and making deliveries, keep the following in mind:
- Deliveries must come directly from the licensed premises.
- Alcohol must be factory sealed in bottles, cans or other like packaging.
- Deliveries may only be made to an address recognized by the U.S. Postal Service.
- Deliveries can be made every day between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 2:00 a.m., and must be fully completed by 2:00 a.m.
- A delivery person must verify the age of the person accepting delivery before handing over alcohol and cannot deliver to any person who shows signs of intoxication.
- Producers must keep adequate records of alcohol deliveries.
- A private carrier making deliveries on your behalf must obtain the signature of the person receiving the alcohol delivery.