Legislation Signed Into Law to Allow Upstate Farms to Grow Brew and Sell Local BeerJul 24th, 2012 | By HV Insider | Category: Featured Articles
Legislation Assemblymember Barrett sponsored to help farms and small breweries signed into law
Assemblymember Didi Barrett (D-Mid-Hudson) announced Governor Cuomo has signed into law legislation that will allow farms to grow, brew and sell locally made beer. In addition, a second measure to provide tax and fee relief for small breweries in New York State was also signed into law. Both initiatives were sponsored by Assemblymember Barrett.
“This is excellent news for small businesses, breweries and farmers across New York State,” Assemblymember Barrett said. “By creating this tax incentive and allowing farms to sell their own beers and cider, we have established a new marketplace for our farms that has the power to revive crops, like hops, that were once a staple of our economy. Not only will this help small businesses, farms and breweries, but this will boost tourism and job creation in the Mid-Hudson Valley.”
The new law – designed to create a farm brewery license – allows farms to sell their beer and/or cider to any New York State-licensed wholesaler or retailer, as well as permit the sale of New York State-labeled beer and cider on and off the premises. The law also allows farm breweries to expand the sales of their product to state fairs, county fairs and farmers markets. In addition, farms are now able to conduct beer and cider tastings similar to local wineries.
To qualify for the brewery license, farms must manufacture, store, and sell New York State-labeled beer and/or cider and have an annual production capacity of 60,000 barrels or less. Beer or cider qualifies as New York State-labeled if the ingredients used in production are New York State-grown, such as hops and apples, Assemblymember Barrett noted.
The second measure is designed to offset a job-killing decision handed down in court and create tax and fee relief for New York’s small breweries that will pass constitutional muster. The new law provides a tax credit or refund of 14 cents per gallon for New York brewers on the first 500,000 gallons produced within the state, and another 4.5 cents-per-gallon credit for the next 15.5 million gallons. Brewers producing in excess of 60 million gallons annually are eligible for the tax credit. In addition, the measure exempts breweries from labeling fees imposed on batches of less than 1,500 barrels.
“Growing our small businesses, like farms and small breweries, is the best path to sustainable economic prosperity in New York,” Assemblymember Barrett said. “Our job as legislators is to cut the red tape and create an environment where businesses can thrive. With these two measures, we did just that.”