5 advantages of applying for a farm winery instead of a farm cidery license

There may several advantages to having a farm winery license instead of a farm cidery license: Since a farm winery and a farm cidery can both produce cider, a farm winery license is a good option to consider. Here are some reasons why:

  1. You can have more freedom and creativity in your recipes. According to the State Liquor Authority, flavorings are not permitted in the production of cider. The only permitted ingredients are apples or apple juice, sugar, water and yeast.  Thus, if you wanted to produce a pumpkin spice cider or a cranberry cider, you’d be able to do so with a farm winery license.
  2. Cider may only be up to 8.5% ABV.  Many cideries like to experiment with higher alcohol varieties. Ciders with an ABV over 8.5% are classified as fruit wines and require a winery license.
  3. The fees are lower. Hey, who doesn’t like to save a buck?
  4. The food requirements for on-premises license privileges are lower. A full kitchen is not required for farm wineries. This is a significant savings in both capital infrastructure and labor costs.
  5. You can allow customers to produce their own cider (or other fruit wine) under your guidance at your premises and using your equipment. This is a great way to build a loyal following and long term relationship with customers. Farm cideries can’t do this.
  6. Farm wineries qualify for temporary permits that can be obtained in about a month in the right circumstances. TTB approval takes many, many months. That can get you opened much, much quicker. The fee is subtracted from the license fee, so the cost is actually nothing.

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