Virginia Craft Brewers Guild

VCBG Priorities

The Virginia Craft Brewers Guild’s founding was driven by the need to make important legislative changes that would ensure the growth of craft beer in Virginia. While the craft beer market continues to grow, it gets more challenging due to competition, “crafty” brand confusion, other alcohol category competition, and distribution and retail challenges. As such, the VCBG top priorities are to:

Defend Virginia’s “Hybrid Self-Distribution” Laws

  • Independent craft beer tasting room retail sales privileges – no retail sales limits (On or Off-Premise) and no regulated hours of operation
  • Expansion breweries – no limits on the number of breweries with retail tasting rooms
  • Brewery In-State and Out-of-State Delivery Permits
  • “Brewpub” exemption from “3 Tier System”
  • Eight (8) Manufacturer’s Beer Event Licenses per year
  • “Arms-length” independent craft beer distributors
  • Alternating proprietorships

Defend current unlimited brewery-to-brewery transfer privileges

Defend current unlimited contract brewing privileges

Improve the performance of the distribution tier

  • Allow limited self-distribution to all breweries through a virtual distribution system within the Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services
  • ABC to regulate voluntary waivers of VA Beer Franchise Act terms in temporary distribution agreement
  • Expedite distribution agreement termination process, including reforming ABC uniform prehearing scheduling orders involving VA Beer Franchise Act dispute
  • Expand the number of small independent craft beer distributors in operation
  • Improve brewery-to-distributor communications and sales planning, and assure that any beer sold by a brewery is delivered by its distributor

Maintain ABC Regulatory Balance

Oppose “Pay-to-Play” Trade Spending

No beer excise tax increases

Expand craft beer tourism and market growth, particularly through the VCBG marketing and tourism programs and Virginia Tourism Corporation programs

Expand authentic independent craft beer branding with consumers through the BA’s “Independent” label, and VCBG’s distributor, retailer, farm brewery, and craft beer fest programs

Increase retail tier recognition of independent Virginia craft breweries and promotion of the Virginia Craft Beer Cup and national award-winning beers

Improve the workforce development system to create a diverse and industry certified talent pool for breweries. Specifically, improve lab, brewing, quality and safety industry credentials earned by brewery staff

Create regional quality networks for brewers to share best practices

Ensure the economic growth of independent craft beer and move Virginia’s ranking into the “Top 10 U.S. States for Breweries Per Capita”

The VCBG is an advocate for the craft beer community and its success is because of the commitment of its members. Learn more about our Priorities by reading our Legislative Reports.