Cheers to 2021: Sovos ShipCompliant Wine Summit Recap

Lizzy Connolly | June 2, 2021

Last month, Sovos ShipCompliant hosted its 16th annual Wine Summit. The virtual event featured sessions and keynotes devoted to regulatory updates, education and how the industry has continued to make adjustments in the wake of the pandemic. We gathered some Summit highlights and fast facts from a few sessions.

Industry & ShipCompliant Product Updates

Larry Cormier, VP, GM Sovos ShipCompliant, shared updates and perspective from a challenging year that was also filled with growth. Even with the COVID-19 pandemic, the direct-to-consumer (DtC) wine shipping market saw record spikes, proving to be “a silver lining in the pandemic cloud.”

State Regulatory Updates

Steve Gross, VP State Relations, Wine Institute, presented his 16th annual Wine Summit address, detailing how the Wine Institute works to expand DtC shipping options in new states, improve existing statutes and protect existing shipping privileges. 

Kentucky ABC’s General Counsel Joshua Newton discussed Kentucky’s recent DtC alcohol shipping program with Alex Koral, Senior Regulatory Counsel, Sovos ShipCompliant. Newton explained that while Kentucky had had a DtC permission for many years, it was not largely adopted. However, when HB 415 passed in 2020, the Kentucky Alcoholic Beverage Control began to issue approved licenses to applicants for the new License to Direct Ship to Consumers.   

In a separate panel, Matthew Botting, General Counsel, California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC), spoke with Sovos ShipCompliant’s Alex Koral about California regulatory updates. The COVID-19 pandemic greatly impacted how California approached the sale and delivery of alcohol. 

DtC and the Future of Wine

Bahaneh Hobel, Partner, Dickenson Peatman & Fogarty and Teri Quimby, former Commissioner at the Michigan Liquor Control Commission presented a session titled, “The Shifting Beverage Alcohol Regulatory Landscape.” The two discussed changing regulatory requirements, potential licensing issues and compliance concerns in the bev alc industry. 

Will Blackmon, Founder, The Wine MVP, explained how his background in professional sports helped him create and develop an educational service for everyone from wine aficionados to wine novices who simply want to learn more. 

On-demand access to the event’s recordings and slides will be available soon. And mark your calendar for the 2022 Sovos ShipCompliant Wine Summit, April 13-14 at the Napa Valley Marriott. We look forward to seeing you there!

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