The Beer Industry

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Beer Blog 1Getting Started in the Brewery/Brewing Industry

Before even beginning operations in the production or sale of brewery based products, a business owner must first decide on what type of brewery based activity that the new business will engage in.  Doing this will not only determine the specific application procedure needed to be completed, but will also allow the business owner to initiate the application process for that area of brewery based activity.

When all of the forms and other required application materials are submitted to TTB, a discovery process will verify confirmation of those involved in the businesses legal eligibility.  Any successful completion of application will result in the authorization by the TTB to begin brewery based operations.

Identify the type of beer operation you want to start:

This is possibly the most important, and in many cases, the hardest decision made prior to getting started in the brewery/brewing industry; deciding which type of operation to initiate.  There are two different subdivisions within the Brewing Industry:

  1. Brewery/Brewpub
  2. Pilot Brewing Plant

The application process among these four types of brewery/brewing subdivisions has many similarities, being all in the same industry. However, there are definitely significant differences among them which effect how a business can become qualified within that subdivision of the Brewing Industry.


If you are interested in producing beer, malt beverages, or Saké for sale, operating a brewpub, or wish to alternate brewery premises with another brewery, you fall into this category.

Pilot Brewing Plant

A pilot brewery may be established either on or off brewery premises for research, analytical, experimental, or developmental purposes relating to beer or brewery operations.


Application to TTB

In order to complete the TTB Application process you must not only complete and pass the qualification process, but submit all of the forms that provide the TTB with all the needed information to consider your application.

The original qualification requires completing the process of providing the TTB with all of the information requested in the application requirements of the Internal Revenue Code and, for producers and blenders, the Federal Alcohol Administration Act.

The purpose of this is to:

  • Provide identification of yourself as the applicant.
  • Identify the nature, location and extent of the premises where you’ll be conducting business.
  • Identify the specific type of operations that will be conducted on the premises.

In order to complete the screening/investigative process TTB will determine that the business is legally eligible and qualified to conduct a brewery/brewing  industry operation.  This research is not an overnight process and can take sometimes as long as 90 or more days, but when the research is completed, the applicant(s) will be notified if authorization to proceed with the business has been granted or not.

Submitting the Application

If someone signs the application on your behalf, you need to give signing authority.

This application can be submitted online or through standard mail delivery to the National Revenue Center’s TTB location in Cincinnati, OH.

Incomplete applications cannot be processed by the NRC.

If supplemental documents or information are missing, the application will be returned.

  • Completed Item 17 of the Brewer’s Notice (TTB F 5130.10)
  • TTB F 5000.8, Power of Attorney
  • TTB F 5100.1, Signing Authority for Corporate or LLC Officials
  • Corporate resolution or specific notification in organizational documents granting this authority

Signing Authority

If someone will be signing the application and/or supporting documents or act on your behalf, you must submit one of the following with your application. If you are filing as a sole owner and someone will sign documents on your behalf, you must file TTB F 5000.8 – Power of Attorney. If you are opening a Experimental DSP, you need to complete TTB F 5000.8.

  • TTB F 5000.8, Power of Attorney
  • TTB F 5100.1, Signing Authority for Corporate or LLC Officials
  • Corporate resolution or specific notification in organizational documents granting this authority

The Decision

A TTB Brewing/Brewery Applications Specialist will review your application Brewer’s Notice and supporting documents. The Brewing/Brewery Applications Specialist will contact you by telephone to conduct an interview, make necessary corrections and/or additions to the application Brewer’s Notice and discuss supplemental information or documentation. When the application is correct and the interview process has been completed, one of two things will happen:

  • The application will be referred to the Trade Investigations Division for an on-site investigation, or
  • Recommendation and decision will be made at the NRC. The recommendations include:
    • Approval
    • Disapproval
    • Withdrawal
    • Abandonment

This is a rather lengthy process, and this is only the first step of many between the federal and the state government in order to begin producing, labeling and selling your product are continued applications prior to approval.  If you have any questions, or would like to utilize our experience and ability to streamline the application process with obtaining your own Bonded Winery please contact us.