Wineries that sell direct to consumer (DtC) into Maryland will have a new requirement for new and renewed applications starting July 1, 2017.
As a result of a bill signed by Governor Larry Hogan on May 4, 2017, wineries must now submit a list of every wine they intend to sell DtC. Maryland has updated its application form for new and renewing DtC wine applicants, which now asks for an attached list of wines to be shipped into Maryland. On the form, it asks for each wine to be identified by brand name and type of wine.
This list must be included with every new and renewed license application. Failing to include such a list will result in a rejected application. Licenses must be renewed every year, so if you intend to renew your license after July 1, but fail to include a list of wines you will sell, that could result in a gap in your license. This in turn would make it impermissible to sell wine DtC.
When submitting a new or renewed license application, the list should only include wines that the winery is currently capable of selling, and not those that the winery intends to sell at a later time in the year. Wines that come up for sale later in the year should be submitted to the state liquor board at that time as an amended list.
That is, if you intend to bottle and sell a 2016 vintage later this year, but at the time of submitting your license application only the 2015 vintage is available, you should only list the 2015 vintage. When the 2016 vintage does become available for sale, then you will be required to submit an updated list that includes the 2016 vintage.