The direct-to-consumer (DtC) shipping model is growing in popularity, as the DtC wine channel recently broke the $4 billion per year mark, and 92% of craft beer drinkers are looking to order their favorite brews to the front door. It’s no surprise that producers, retailers and other potential shippers are itching to meet the growing demand. However, DtC rules vary from one state to the next, and not every state has the same restrictions when it comes to products being shipped. What are the current limitations facing the DtC alcohol shipping industry?
States that do not allow DtC wine shipping
Nearly every state (and Washington, D.C.) allows DtC wine shipping. There are currently just two states that do not allow DtC wine shipping in any form:
Delaware and Rhode Island severely limit DtC wine shipping.
States that do not allow DtC beer shipping
DtC beer shipping is not as widespread, with most states not allowing it to occur. The following states do not allow beer to be shipped to a consumer’s front door:
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
States that do not allow DtC liquor shipping
Currently, only seven states and the District of Columbia allow DtC liquor shipping. The states that prohibit shipments to a consumer’s home are:
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana. Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
States that do not allow DtC cider shipping
Some states consider cider to be a type of wine, while others define it as beer or its own type of alcohol entirely. Because of these technicalities, it’s extremely important to know the specific rules of each state. Some states prohibit the shipping of cider altogether; these states are:
Delaware, Mississippi, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee and Utah.
DtC shipping rules vary from state-to-state and are not static. Rules and regulations change over time, meaning that maintaining compliance is not a simple feat. States sometimes abruptly add more restrictions or open up for business without much notice. If you’re unhappy with the current DtC restrictions in your state, engage with grassroots campaigns and guilds aimed at the wine, liquor and beer industries.
Check out our free ebook to learn more about the DtC alcohol shipping essentials.