State Legislature Passes Skinner’s “Craft Distiller Op-pour-tunity” Act

August 30, 2018

Sacramento, CA — Today, State Senator Nancy Skinner’s (D-Berkeley) SB 1164, the “Craft Distiller Op-pour-tunity” Act, passed the State Legislature with bipartisan support. SB 1164 would modify existing regulations to give California’s small batch craft distillers more leeway to produce and sell their products.

“Craft distillers, with their emphasis on locally sourced California ingredients, capture and bottle the essence of California’s Farm to Table movement,” said Skinner. “SB 1164 makes it easier for us to responsibly enjoy these local products.”

SB 1164 would increase the amount of spirits California’s craft distillers can produce, while still keeping craft distillers well below the production levels of large-scale manufacturers. By doing so, SB 1164 will allow California’s small craft distillers to maintain their licenses even as they expand their businesses and market reach.

Also, SB 1164 would allow craft distillers to operate more like California’s wineries and breweries by giving craft distillers the opportunity to sell their product to people visiting the distillery even when those visitors haven’t participated in a tasting. 

“Visitors to a craft distiller shouldn’t have to take a drink to buy something for later,” said Skinner. “SB 1164 lets people purchase directly from our artisanal distillers, just like they are able to from a winery.”

Senator Nancy Skinner (@NancySkinnerCA) represents the 9th Senate District. She serves as Chair of the Senate Public Safety Committee and the Budget Subcommittee on Corrections, Public Safety and the Judiciary.