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So far Tom has created 16 blog entries.

CBMA Tax Benefit for European Wineries

The Craft Beverage Modernization Act (CBMA) provisions provide for reduced rates or tax credits for beer, wine, and distilled spirits produced in or imported into the United States. These CBMA tax benefits are limited in quantity for each producer, including foreign producers. Foreign producers utilize these CBMA tax benefits by assigning them to U.S. importers of their products.  U.S. importers pay the Federal excise tax on imported beer, wine, and distilled spirits, and must receive an assignment of the CBMA tax benefits from the foreign producer to take advantage of the CBMA tax benefits. Starting in 2023, the Alcohol and [...]

November 28th, 2022|

How to create a new Wine Brand

Many of the larger wine suppliers in the United States frequently create new wine brands – often geared towards a specific target market.  For example, the Chloe Collection by the Wine Group targets female wine consumers. The wines offered by many of these brands do not necessarily come from one vineyard.  Often, they buy grapes from other sources to create a unique wine portfolio from a variety of wine regions that appeal to the selected target market. While it may feel strange for vineyards steeped in tradition and proud of their current brands to create a brand-new label, creating [...]

October 27th, 2022|

When in America, do and think as the Americans do

We all have heard the old saying ‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’.  It makes a lot of sense and applies to any country in which one wants to do business successfully.  We discussed the definition of success in an earlier blog post. Attitudes towards business, risk, and business relationships, in general, vary greatly between Europe and the United States. Europeans tend to be more conservative about business, money, and risk. Relationships between companies tend to last for years. The same is often true for relationships with employees.  Developing new business relationships in Europe generally takes a long [...]

October 25th, 2022|

The Definition of Success

Or more specifically, what is the definition of success for foreign wine producers in the US market? When speaking to wineries in Europe we often hear that they are simply looking for an importer.  Finding an importer and selling their wine to the importer seems to define success for many.  Does that make sense? How do most manufacturers of consumer products define success?  Selling the product to An importer? A wholesaler? A retailer? A consumer? Most brands understand that sales to consumers are key to and definition of success.  Not just sales to consumers but repeat sales to consumers.  Students [...]

October 21st, 2022|

Why are French wines so cheap in France yet so expensive in the US?

Anyone who has traveled to and spent time in France will have noticed how inexpensive wine is there.  The average price for a bottle of red wine in France was €4.91/liter in 2020, for white wine the average price was €5.65/liter according to FranceAgriMer. Yet at the same time, French and European wines in general are much more expensive in the US market.  Apparently, it is not the fault of French winemakers.  Word on the street is that European wines retail for an average of 4 x EXW or more in the US.  Why is that?  The simple answer: [...]

September 25th, 2022|

The Role and Responsibilities of the Federal Importer

Anyone wanting to import foreign wine into the United States needs to hold an importer’s basic permit under the Federal Alcohol Administration Act (FAA Act).  The holder of the permit has various obligations and responsibilities including paying all applicable taxes and duties for the alcoholic beverages, obtaining Certificates of Label Approval (COLA) for the products imported, and fulfilling all other statutory and regulatory requirements applicable to importers under the FAA Act, the Alcoholic Beverage Labeling Act of 1988, and the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. Beyond these basic duties and responsibilities, one important question is if the federal importer has [...]

March 5th, 2022|

Legal Considerations for open Creativity in Social and Digital Media

A lot of posts and ads for alcoholic beverages in social, digital, and streaming media are – well – boring. This might have to do with a lack of creativity on the part of the people developing the ad content. But some of it might also be rooted in the belief that social and digital media ads should not be too creative or ‘adventurous’ out of an ‘abundance of caution’. Here at QBP, we set out to help brands solve both problems to increase ROI.  We champion the idea of creative crowdsourcing to allow for more ideas and imagination to [...]

November 2nd, 2020|

3-Tier System for Alcohol Sales in the United States

The system refers to the 3 tiers involved in the supply chain for alcoholic beverages: Manufacturer – Wholesaler – Retailer The member in each tier needs to sell the alcoholic beverage to a member of another tier.  The 3 tier system is not mandated on the federal level but only on the state level. Of course, similar supply chain systems are used in many countries for many types of products sold in retail stores.  In that sense, there is nothing particularly unique about this system. What makes the 3-tier system for wine in the US somewhat different is the fact [...]

October 17th, 2020|

Wine Retail in the United States

European wine producers interested to sell their products in the US market generally try the same old, traditional way to market entry.  Find an importer. If everything goes according to plan the importer will bring the product to the US.  Then they will attempt to sell it to a wholesaler.  And the wholesaler will sell it to a retailer.  And the consumer will buy the wine.  For well-known brands that are well established in the United States, it might work but for lesser-known brands, it may not.  It probably won’t. This raises an important question.  When a consumer product sits [...]

October 12th, 2020|

Marketing is Key to Building a Big Brand

What differentiates the most successful brands (in terms of sales) in any industry from less successful ones? The successful ones are generally great marketers. Their main focus is on building their brand and selling their products, not the process of making them. Some of the largest and most successful alcohol brands are part of really good marketing organizations. Smaller alcohol brands can learn a lot of such companies. Some people might object to the definition of success purely on the basis of sales. They may point out that producing a quality alcoholic beverage is an art in itself. This is [...]

July 10th, 2020|