News | Advocacy & Policy

Distilled Spirits Council of the United States President & CEO Chris Swonger Statement on the Launch of Negotiations for a U.S.-UK Trade Agreement: “This is a very positive development for the U.S. spirits industry.  We applaud the administration for launching trade negotiations with one of our most important trading partners and urge the administration to […]

           -Industry “Day of Action” Already Results in More Than 13,000 Communications to Congress- WASHINGTON — In a letter sent today to Senate and House leadership, U.S. distilled spirits trade associations urged Congress to provide additional economic relief to the thousands of distilleries facing enormous financial hardship due to the impact […]

Portal connects distillers with resources for ingredients, supplies, distribution WASHINGTON — The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) today launched an online portal to assist hundreds of distillers who are producing hand sanitizer to help solve the national shortage created by the COVID-19 pandemic. DISCUS has worked closely with regulators to overcome regulatory hurdles, and distillers now have clear direction to […]

Leaders in the beverage alcohol sector are urging industry advocates across the nation to participate in a national Day of Action on December 5 by contacting their members of Congress to urge passage of the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act, S.362/H.R. 1175 (CBMTRA). “With less than four weeks remaining before the current tax […]

WASHINGTON – A recent study released by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation suggests expanding the NY bottle bill to include wine and liquor, but the study’s own research shows the move would impact approximately 4,500 businesses. Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) Vice President of State Government Relations Jay Hibbard released the following […]

HARRISBURG, Pa. – David Wojnar, vice president of state government relations for the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), testified today at a Pennsylvania Senate Law and Justice Committee hearing that an increase in spirits outlets will result in convenience for consumers and increased revenue for the commonwealth. “Pennsylvania drastically lags behind other control states in the number of spirits […]

WASHINGTON –  The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), America’s leading advocate for the distilled spirits industry, today announced that the Texas Distilled Spirits Association (TDSA) and the Texas Whiskey Association (TXWA) have joined Spirits United as partners to expand the grassroots network in the Lone Star State. The Spirits United platform features important information […]

UPDATED RELEASE: Oct. 7, 2019 WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. alcohol trade groups urged an end to tariffs on EU distilled spirits and wine following the United States decision announced today to impose tariffs of 25 percent on imports of Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Single Malt Irish Whiskey from Northern Ireland, liqueurs and cordials, and wine […]

Today, the Pennsylvania House Liquor Control Committee passed HB 1512, a bill to repeal the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s (PLCB) flexible pricing program. Last week, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) Chief Economist David Ozgo and President and CEO of the American Distilled Spirits Association Matt Dogali testified before the committee to highlight the harmful impacts this […]

          Contact: Ainsley Holyfield 202-549-6797 Spirits Industry Leaders Urge Legislators to Repeal Flexible Pricing HARRISBURG, Pa. – Distilled spirits industry officials testified today before the Pennsylvania House Liquor Control Committee regarding the harmful consumer impacts caused by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s (PLCB) Flexible Pricing Program. Among those who testified were Distilled Spirits […]

Craft Distillers Face 400% Tax Hike Without Congressional Action In a letter sent today to members of Congress, Distilled Spirits Council of the United States President and CEO Chris Swonger urged legislators to “join the bipartisan and bicameral effort to support America’s vibrant small businesses” by co-cosponsoring the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act. […]

Registration Open for Marquee Industry Event WASHINGTON– The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), the leading voice and advocate for the U.S. spirits industry, today announced it will host its Inaugural Conference on Feb. 17-19, 2020, at the Omni Hotel in Louisville, KY. “For the first time in our history, we’re bringing together […]

Spirits United , a new multifaceted grassroots tool aimed at bringing together a broad base of spirits advocates from industry professionals to consumers, was formally launched today by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), American Distilling Institute (ADI) and TIPS. The Spirits United platform features important information on key issues facing the spirits industry, […]

Alcohol Trade Groups Urge USTR Not to Impose Retaliatory Tariffs on EU Spirits & Wines  WASHINGTON, DC – Up to 78,600 jobs in the U.S. beverage alcohol and hospitality sectors could be lost if distilled spirits, wine and non-alcoholic beer are included on the final U.S. list of European Union (EU) products targeted for retaliatory […]

Governor Roy Cooper signed into law today new legislation allowing North Carolina consumers the opportunity to sample distilled spirits products at tasting events held in state ABC stores. “Today’s spirits consumers are fascinated by cocktail culture and want to learn more about the heritage and taste profile of different types of distilled spirits,” said David […]

Two New Positions Created to Run Council’s Export Promotion Activities WASHINGTON, DC – The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) today announced that it applied for and was awarded an additional $400,000 through USDA’s Agricultural Trade Program (ATP) , which was set up specifically to assist those agricultural groups that are being adversely impacted by retaliatory tariffs.  This […]

WASHINGTON, DC – More than 150 distillers from around the country are gathering in Washington, D.C. July 22-24 for the distilled spirits industry’s 10th annual Public Policy Conference, co-hosted by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States and the American Craft Spirits Association (ACSA). The conference will feature a series of legislative and regulatory […]

The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) today unveiled its new interactive Summary of State Laws and Regulations Relating to Distilled Spirits tool, a database for current laws, regulations and rulings relating to the sale and distribution of distilled spirits in the United States. This announcement marks the modernization of DISCUS’ longstanding “Summary […]

“We strongly oppose the inclusion of distilled spirits products in any proposed retaliation list.  These tariffs, if imposed, will have numerous unintended negative consequences on U.S. jobs, U.S. consumers and many U.S. companies that export to the EU.  U.S. companies–from farmers, to suppliers to retailers–are already being negatively impacted by the imposition of retaliatory tariffs […]

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott today signed into law historic legislation that will promote a free and fair market for liquor store ownership in the Lone Star State. Abbott signed   HB 1545 , sponsored by Sen. Brian Birdwell, R-Granbury, and Rep. Chris Paddie, R-Marshall, that authorizes the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to continue operating through 2031. The […]

Support for the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act (H.R. 1175/ S.362) continues to build momentum with 218 members of the United States House of Representatives and 65 members of the Senate supporting the bipartisan legislation. Introduced by Representatives Ron Kind (D-WI) and Mike Kelly (R-PA) and Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Roy Blunt […]

Trade groups representing several beverage alcohol suppliers, wholesalers, importers and retailers, submitted comments to the United States Trade Representative (USTR) urging the removal of spirits, wine and non-alcoholic beer from its draft list of European Union (EU) products being targeted for proposed retaliatory tariffs. The preliminary list of targeted EU products, which was announced by […]

The Texas Senate and House of Representatives have overwhelmingly approved historic legislation that strikes down a decades-old anticompetitive and unconstitutional loophole limiting liquor store ownership that will promote a free and fair market in Texas. The Legislature approved HB 1545, sponsored by Sen. Brian Birdwell, R-Granbury, and Rep. Chris Paddie, R-Marshall, that would authorize the […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today welcomed news that the United States, Canada, and Mexico reached an agreement that will result in the prompt repeal of retaliatory tariffs on American Whiskey exports to Canada and Mexico. “We thank the Administration for reaching an agreement to secure the removal of retaliatory tariffs on American Whiskey exports to […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today called on the Connecticut legislature to reject the budget proposal by the state Joint Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee, which included a new 10 percent excise tax increase on alcohol. “The proposal is a massive tax increase on consumers that received no oversight or chance for public comment,” said Distilled Spirits […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today issued the following statement from Distilled Spirits Council Vice President Jay Hibbard: The mayor’s decision to ban alcohol advertising is misguided and unsupported by the scientific research. The research is clear – parents and other adults are the most influential factors in a youth’s decision whether or not to drink […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today lauded legislation introduced by State Senator Gene Yaw (R-23) that would expand the number of outlets permitted to sell spirits in Pennsylvania. The legislation, SB 548, would increase the number of spirits outlets by allowing existing off-premise licensees, including grocery stores with “R licenses” and beer retailers, to immediately begin […]

The Texas Senate and House of Representatives today recognized April as Alcohol Responsibility Month as “a welcome opportunity to call attention to the work that must be done to further reduce the tragic impact of drunk driving and underage drinking in Texas.” The Senate and House approved SR 536 by Sen. Kelly Hancock, R-North Richland Hills, and […]

Beginning July 1, 2019, Virginians will be able to purchase a bottle of spirits on Sundays beginning at 10 a.m. instead of noon, under a new law recently signed by Governor Ralph Northam. “Increasing shopping convenience is good for the consumer and good for Virginia,” said David Wojnar, Vice President of the Distilled Spirits Council, […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today released a new report showing the negative impact of the retaliatory tariffs on American Whiskeys is accelerating, particularly to the European Union (EU), according to full year 2018 export data. Last month, at its Annual Economic Briefing, the Council reported the imposition of retaliatory tariffs beginning in June 2018 caused American […]

Beginning this weekend, West Virginians can purchase a bottle of spirits any day of the week, under a new law signed today by Governor Jim Justice repealing the state’s Prohibition-era ban on Sunday liquor sales. “More and more states are rolling back these outdated Sunday sales bans to modernize their alcohol laws and increase consumer […]

Requires 31 Dry or Partially Dry Counties to Opt-Out by Referendum   Virginia Governor Ralph Northam today signed into law SB 1110 , which makes the entire state “wet” but allows localities to opt-out of alcohol sales by referendum, according to the Distilled Spirits Council. The new law applies to 31 counties that are “dry” or “partially […]

Legislation introduced in the Texas Senate would remove a decades-old anticompetitive and unconstitutional limit on package store ownership and promote a free and fair market in Texas. State Sen. Brian Birdwell, R-Granbury, has introduced Senate Bill 645 that would remove the limit on package store ownership and the so-called “consanguinity loophole.” Current Texas law limits the number of […]

Texans would have the opportunity to purchase their favorite distilled spirits from package stores on Sundays under new legislation introduced in the Texas Legislature. State Rep. Richard Peña Raymond, D-Laredo, has introduced House Bill 1100 that would allow Texas package stores to open seven days a week. The legislation, if approved by the 86th Legislature, would repeal one […]

The Distilled Spirits Council, in coordination with a diverse, ad hoc coalition of more than 45 business and agricultural groups, today sent a letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer requesting that the United States work with Mexico and Canada to end retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods as soon as possible. “U.S. spirits have […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today registered strong support for legislation that would allow alcohol sales in all jurisdictions of the Commonwealth. Virginia. SB 1110 , sponsored by Virginia Senator Bryce Reeves, was reported out of the Senate’s Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services earlier today. The legislation would make the entire state of Virginia wet, requiring localities to […]

A 25-year-old ban on alcohol billboards in Baltimore City has been repealed following an ordinance passed by the City Council and signed into law late December by Mayor Catherine Pugh, according to the Distilled Spirits Council. Under the new sign ordinance, outdoor alcohol advertising will be permitted on any outdoor stationary location except within five […]

Distilled spirits sales have not been negatively impacted in the three states that have had legalized recreational marijuana retail sales the longest, according to a study by the Distilled Spirits Council. This new in-depth analysis, utilizing state-level alcohol tax receipts and actual alcohol shipment data, examined per capita alcohol sales in Colorado, Washington state and […]

The Distilled Spirits Council called on the Texas Legislature to modernize state laws governing distilled spirits to promote competition and economic growth. The Texas Sunset Advisory Commission today approved recommendations to the 86th Texas Legislature on changes to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code. “Even though more than 80 years […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today criticized the U.S. Treasury Department for rejecting the excise tax drawback on spirits, beer and wine that are produced in the United States for export, as Congress explicitly directed in the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (TFTEA). The U.S. Treasury Department and U.S. Customs and Border Protection […]

On the 85th Anniversary of Prohibition Repeal, the Distilled Spirits Council toasts to the spirits renaissance and continued modernization of alcohol laws and regulations across the country. The 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified December 5, 1933, repealing the 18th Amendment and bringing an end to Prohibition in America. Since Prohibition Repeal 85 […]

The Distilled Spirits Council recently participated in two events to highlight the importance of export markets to the U.S. spirits industry. Distilled Spirits Council Senior Vice President for International Issues and Trade Christine LoCascio spoke at the Glass Packaging Institute ’s annual meeting about the tremendous growth in U.S. spirits exports over the past two decades and the […]

Urges Quick Removal of Retaliatory Tariffs on American Whiskeys The Distilled Spirits Council today welcomed the announcement of a new, modernized trade agreement, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). “Trade is a key component to a strong economy, and the U.S. spirits industry and our consumers benefit from free and fair trade agreements,” said Distilled Spirits […]

The Distilled Spirits Council today issued the following statement in response to China imposing a 25 percent tariff on U.S. whiskey products.

In a letter today presented to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, the Distilled Spirits Council said it is “extremely concerned” about the increasing likelihood that the European Union (EU) and other countries will begin retaliating against U.S. spirits products in response to the U.S. decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum, and “the impact that retaliatory tariffs will have on U.S. distilled spirits producers, as well as their agricultural and supply chain partners.”

The Distilled Spirits Council today urged Massachusetts lawmakers to reject a proposal to impose a new 5-cent per container deposit on all 50-milliliter distilled spirits products, which would impose a significant burden on consumers without providing any intended benefit. “With recycling rates at historic levels, most states recognize that bottle deposit laws are a relic […]

The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (Distilled Spirits Council) today announced that it is conducting an export promotion in Sydney, Australia June 14, 18, and 19 to showcase some of the finest American distilled spirits products in one of its most important export markets.

Distilled spirits producers from across the country are gathering in Washington, D.C., May 14-16 for the ninth annual Public Policy Conference hosted by the Distilled Spirits Council and the American Craft Spirits Association (ACSA).

The Distilled Spirits Council today applauded the 110th Tennessee General Assembly for voting to allow seven-day alcohol sales in the state.

The Hill, one of Washington, D.C.’s premier publications covering Congress, the Administration and politics, named the Distilled Spirits Council’s Kraig R. Naasz, Mark Gorman and David Culver to its  2017 Association Top Lobbyists List . The Capitol Hill newspaper cited the Council’s efforts on tax reform and reducing the federal excise tax for spirits, wine and beer as a reason […]