According to Reuters, the U.S. Congress passed a tax overhaul on makers of craft beer, hard cider, artisanal spirits, and mead that will take into effect starting next year. In the U.S., small craft producers have been rapidly growing in the alcoholic beverage industry where sales totaled to about $4.8 billion in the 12 months ended in January. This new tax reform will give these producers a little more profit that can help them lower prices, experiment on new beverages, market, and expand elsewhere.
I’ve been working on the issue since 1993,” said Arthur DeCelle, a McDermott Will & Emery lobbyist working for the brewing industry. “I never thought it was going to happen.”
Hard cider tax has been lowered from $1 to 7 cents a gallon for small producers. The tax on a 12-ounce can of cider is now lower than a penny per can compared to about 10 cents a can. Makers of distilled spirits including vodka, gin, and bourbon will now pay $2.70 a gallon in tax on the first 100,000 gallons produced compared to a previous tax of $13.34 a gallon. Craft beer producers will now pay tax of only $3.50 a barrel on the first 60,000 brewed while bigger producers of more than 6 million barrels will only pay $18 a barrel. Last year, craft beer sales soared about 6.2%, making about 12.3% of the beer industry.