New License Expands Recreational Production of Craft Beverage in New York State
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that applications are now being accepted for the operation of custom craft beverage production centers to provide space and equipment to those looking to produce beer, wine, or cider for home consumption. The State Liquor Authority, the agency overseeing the application process, will provide new licenses to facilitate the production of homemade beer, wine and cider. Licenses are available to both current craft manufacturers seeking to establish a secondary business at their current location, or businesses seeking to open a standalone custom homemade craft beverage production center.
"This new license provides greater opportunity for New Yorkers to make their own beer, wine or cider, while helping to strengthen an already booming craft beverage industry," Governor Cuomo said. "This win-win-win makes it easier for hobby brewers, vintners and cider makers to hone their craft, while offering beverage manufacturers a new source of revenue that in turn helps New York farms succeed and thrive."
On November 14, 2016, Governor Cuomo signed legislation creating the new license authorizing the creation of custom craft production centers where craft beverage enthusiasts, hobbyists and other amateur brewers, vintners and cider makers can utilize the expertise, space and equipment of existing facilities to produce craft beverages for personal consumption.
New York's craft beverage industry is one of the fastest growing in the nation, however in urban and suburban areas, residents often cannot afford or do not have access to the appropriate space or equipment to manufacture products at home. In addition to providing space and lowering the overhead costs, the new custom production centers will also increase demand for locally grown ingredients, generate revenue for New York's small craft manufacturers and provide expert hands-on training for hobbyists and those exploring joining the growing ranks of craft producers across New York State.
The application for current craft manufacturers to add a custom manufacturing facility to their existing premises is available here.
The application for those not currently holding a manufacturing license is available here.
Senator David Carlucci said, "Providing places in the community for people with shared interests to come together has always been important to me. The creation of these custom centers will allow neighbors to receive training and share equipment. New York's beer, wine, and cider industry is blossoming, and this program will allow the talent pool to thrive. Moreover, it will have a positive effect on the agricultural industry in New York State, as more producers will look to use locally-grown grapes, apples, hops, and barley. I thank Governor Cuomo for his role in growing this field."
Assembly Agriculture Committee Chair Bill Magee said, "This new license will allow growers, hobbyists, and fans and of craft brewing to engage in small scale production of their own crafted beverages. This will benefit sales of New York grown farm products that are used in wine and beer production, as well as to create and support a new market base for the newly licensed custom crush facilities."
State Liquor Authority Chairman Vincent Bradley said, "This is yet another example of this administration's efforts to further stimulate New York's resurgence in craft beverage production. By providing craft enthusiasts with fully equipped facilities, ingredients and expert guidance during the process, this new license will allow more New Yorkers to experience craft production firsthand while providing craft manufacturers new opportunities to expand their business and reach new customers."
State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, "This new license is another exciting way that we can continue to grow the craft beverage industry and increase demand for locally grown products in New York State. New York has some of the best and brightest minds and this new legislation signed by Governor Cuomo is a win-win for our entrepreneurs and our consumers. It allows our beverage manufacturers to bring in new business by sharing their space and expertise and it opens up new doors for those who want to learn the skill of making beer, wine or cider."
Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "Governor Cuomo has worked to grow New York State's craft beverage industry by establishing new licenses and cutting red tape, spurring job creation and economic growth. This custom license will generate new interest in our state craft beverage industry, providing continued support for local businesses and craft beverage manufacturers."
New York Farm Bureau President David Fisher said, "The new license will enable wineries, breweries, and cideries in New York State to expand their services and encourage additional growth within the prosperous craft beverage industry. Farmers will benefit as well as the expansion will increase the demand for locally grown fruits and other farm grown ingredients needed to produce the home brews."
Under the leadership of Governor Cuomo, New York is now home to over 600 farm wineries, breweries, distilleries and cideries. The number of farm wineries in New York has increased by nearly 70 percent, from 195 in 2010 to 329 today, while the number of farm distilleries grew from just 10 in 2010 to 114 today. Two new licenses have been created since 2011: the farm brewery license in 2013 and the farm cidery license in 2014, with New York now home to 163 farm breweries and 34 farm cideries.