Corey Day Discusses Legal Ins and Outs of Starting a Distillery Club

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Litigator and alcoholic beverage attorney Corey Day co-authored an article with Stoel Rives summer associate Cheyanne Martin for Artisan Spirit magazine titled “Distillery Club Considerations,” published winter 2020. The article discusses several legal issues to be aware of for members of the spirits industry contemplating starting a “distillery club” – like the popular wine club, a members-only club that offers perks such as discounts on shipments of its products.

The authors point out that since a distillery club is an agreement, or contract, between the distillery and the members of the club, it is important to put the terms of the club in writing and to clearly outline the parties’ responsibilities.

General considerations for operators of a distillery club include being cognizant of what the laws are regulating alcohol manufacture and sale for the state in which the club operates; and deciding on details of how the club operates and if the club will offer membership benefits. Operators also need to be aware of local regulations regarding shipping spirits to customers and of applicable privacy laws that govern the handling of members’ personal information.

Day concludes: “Now that you’ve considered all the above are you ready to start a distillery club? Unfortunately, no. Doing so is a great start, but I always recommend that you consult a distillery attorney and make sure there aren’t any additional considerations for your specific distillery.”

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Corey M. Day
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