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Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) and Home-Brewers

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If you’ve been reading stories about the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) ban on sharing home-brewed beer (and the Oregon Homebrewers Alliance has links and information), you might want to read the law itself and a bit more on how this all came about.

1) The OLCC Blog has information and you can visit their other news sites as well.

2) The Willamette Week has information and a link to the July 23, 2010, OLCC press release.

3) The Portland Mercury has cites to laws and advocacy groups in their July 15, 2010, article and follow-up: “Beerly Legal: Serving Homebrew in Public Is Illegal. Who Knew?” by Stefan Kamph. It helps your cause when a legislator who knows how to the shepard legislation through the system is himself an award-winning homebrewer:

Excerpt: “…”There needs to be a much broader exemption,” says Oregon State Senator Floyd Prozanski from Eugene, whose Captain Nimrod Nut Brown Ale homebrew has won awards. “Currently, if you bring a homebrewed six pack to your friend’s house for dinner, that’s illegal.”

Prozanski says that the law could be revised in 2011….”

4) According to this post at OPB, even OLCC is looking to make a change in the law.

Excerpt: ‘OLCC Looks To Change Statute On Home Brewing, by Alex Lewis, July 23, 2010:

… Christie Scott is with the OLCC. She says the agency is already working to get the law changed.

Christie Scott: “It’s just makes common sense to get it changed. The homebrewers haven’t been a public safety issue for us. So there’s no reason for us to advocate against getting this law changed.”’ (Link to full post.)

5) The ORS statute cited is this one: 2009 ORS 471.403 (or from the ORS homepage if the direct link isn’t working), which reads:

2009 ORS 471.403 License required to produce alcoholic liquor; exception.

(1) No person shall brew, ferment, distill, blend or rectify any alcoholic liquor unless licensed so to do by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. However, the Liquor Control Act does not apply to the making or keeping of naturally fermented wines and fruit juices or beer in the home, for home consumption and not for sale.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, the holder of a brewery-public house license or a brewery license may allow patrons to brew malt beverages not to exceed 14 percent alcoholic content by volume if the brewing is conducted under the direct supervision of the licensee or employees of the licensee. Malt beverages produced under this subsection may not be sold by the patron or consumed on the licensed premises.

(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1) of this section, the holder of a winery license may allow patrons to make wine if the winemaking is conducted under the direct supervision of the licensee or employees of the licensee. Wine produced under this subsection may not be sold by the patron or consumed on the licensed premises. [Formerly 471.205; 2007 c.414 §1]