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COVID-19 Stimulus Bill FAQs & Action Items

DISCLAIMER: Park Street has put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions that we hope will be helpful for you. Just a quick reminder, please, that we are not attorneys and are not providing legal advice. Also, while we touch on a number of the major items below, please note that this is not a definitive list of the provisions or relevant considerations. Our goal is to provide the highlights of what we believe will be most relevant to most clients. There are, of course, a myriad of special circumstances that may apply to you. We recommend that you consult with your counsel and/or banking professional as applicable. Stimulus FAQs / Action Items Who is eligible? Each of the following as of 2/15/2020: 1) Small businesses with 500 employees or less; however, the Act waives certain affiliation rules for businesses in the hospitality and restaurant industries which would enable a number of employees in excess of 500 in certain circumstances 2) Sole-proprietors, independent contractors, and other self-employed individuals as eligible for loans What is needed to determine eligibility? And what is the certification required? Business must have been operational as of February 15, 2020 and had employees for whom it paid salaries and payroll taxes, or a paid independent contractor You will be required to make a good faith certification that (i) the loan is necessary due to the uncertainty of current economic conditions caused by COVID-19, (ii) the loan proceeds will be used to for allowable purposes (see more on this below) including but not limited to payroll, group health benefits, rent, and utility payments, and (iii) you...

TTB Relaxes Restrictions on Beverage Alcohol Returns

With the widespread cancellation of large meetings, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax & Trade Bureau is relaxing its rules on consignment sales. Typically, the TTB does not allow returns of slow-moving or overstocked wines and spirits. However, the TTB is adjusting its policy given the unexpected and widespread nature of the concerns involving COVID-19. Currently, returns of alcohol beverage products that were purchased to sell during cancelled events will not violate federal consignment sales rules. The TTB will allow these returns provided the products were not initially purchased or sold with the privilege of return. A producer or wholesaler is not required to accept returns of such products,...

Spirit-Infused Wine Banks

Spirit-infused wine combines the science of aging wine with the science of spirit-aging, which creates a very unique blend. However, the spirits selected need to complement, as well as enhance the tasting notes of the chosen wine. Whiskey, rye, and bourbon barrels are known to complement red wine varietals, while tequila barrels are known to complement white wine varietals. With a variety of options and price points, there is something for everyone. Source: Forbes, December...

Imports and Exports Report: Beer, Spirits, & Wine

Imported beer grew 4.10% by value and 1.70% by volume, while exported beer grew 11.3% by value over the last twelve months. On the other hand, imported packaged spirits grew 15.3% by value and 10.2% by volume, while imported bulk spirits grew 13.6% by value over the last twelve months. Imported packaged wine grew 2.50% by value and 3.60% by volume, while imported packaged wine grew 11.2% by volume. Similarly, exported bulk wine grew 5.70% by volume over the last twelve months. Source: BW166, December...

Interactive Bar Experience from the touch of your hands

A company recently created a memorable, interactive bar experience for customers. Users begin by ordering the drinks through the application. Next, the user walks over to the bar and can play a digital game while waiting for the drinks. A stream of bubbles connects the phone to the drinks as the bartender is preparing them. Once the drink is placed on the bar, the bubbles burst. A launch date is yet to be announced. Source: Chain Storage, December...

Alcohol Trends 2019: What are Americans drinking?

Brands continue to join recent alcohol trends due to consumer cravings of premium liquors, canned wines, spiked seltzers, and pre-made cocktails. According to Nielsen, sales for tequila increased by 13%, whiskey by 8%, spirits by 6%, and vodka by 3%. Today, many consumers seek drinks that are portable, lower in calories and sugar. Options such as canned wines, pre-made cocktails, and hard seltzers are all served in plastic, glass, or canned bottles. Canned wine sales increased by 73%. On the other hand, sales for hard seltzer increased by nearly 200% in the last 52 weeks. Contrarily, sales for pre-made cocktails increased by 17%. Source: CNN, December...

Vertical Wine Tastings

Vertical tastings consist of tasting the same wine, which consists of the same winery, vineyard designation, and varietal from several years. You can create your collection of wines for vertical tastings by collecting the same wine as it is released each year. The bottle should be stored until a minimum of three vintages are represented. On the other hand, you can purchase the bottles from a winery that contains multiple vintages of a particular wine. Source: Tri-City Herald, December...

Vertical Wine Tastings

Vertical tastings consist of tasting the same wine, which consists of the same winery, vineyard designation, and varietal from several years. You can create your collection of wines for vertical tastings by collecting the same wine as it is released each year. The bottle should be stored until a minimum of three vintages are represented. On the other hand, you can purchase the bottles from a winery that contains multiple vintages of a particular wine. Source: Tri-City Herald, December...

The Future of Hard Seltzer in 2023

A new report from IWSR Drinks Market Analysis reveals that 55% of alcohol consumers in the U.S. drink hard seltzers at least once a week. The study defines, examines, and quantifies the size of the hard seltzer category as a whole. While hard seltzer appeals to the younger crowd of consumers, the category reaches all ages, as well as demographics. The current share of hard seltzer e-commerce sales is 0.8%; however, more and more consumers continue to purchase these products online. ISWR estimates e-commerce sales to increase to approximately 2%. IWSR predicts that the hard seltzer category will triple by 2023, to reach more than 281 million cases. Source: IWSR, December...

The Success of Rosé: Marketing Strategies and Packaging Innovation

Rosé remains one of the most influential trends within the category of wine. Many brands have changed their marketing strategies to appeal to both males and females due to rosé’s success as a gender-neutral beverage. The pink-colored wine appeals to consumers due to its affordability, as well as it’s light and sweet flavor. On the other hand, rosé’s packaging innovation appeals to occasion-based drinkers, such as those who attend outdoor sporting events and music festivals. Alcohol categories can use the success of rosé to boost their brands. Source: IWSR, December...