Virginia Craft Brewers Guild

COVID-19 Resource Center

Daily Updates
Prevention and Response Recommendations
Government Resources
Industry Best Practices and Resources

The VCBG is committed to providing members with factual, reliable and timely information regarding COVID-19 and its potential impact on Virginia’s craft beer industry, its employees and its supply-chain.

Daily Updates

February 24, 2021 –Governor Northam Increases Capacity Limits for Outdoor Sports and Entertainment Venues [document here]

February 16, 2021 – Virginia Launches Central Pre-Registration Website for COVID-19 Vaccine.

January 27, 2021 – 16VAC25-220, Final Permanent Standard for Infectious Disease Prevention of the SARS-CoV-2 Virus that Causes COVID-19 goes into effect today. Under the new Final Permanent Standard, infectious disease preparedness and response plans must be completed by March 26, 2021. Training requirements are effective on March 26, 2021. The Manufacturing Skills Institute (MSI) developed a suite of online courses to assist manufacturers comply with these standards. Online courses are available 24/7 at

December – The VCBG has updated the Craft Brewery Pledge in line with updated Phase 3 Reopening Guidelines.

November – Updated OSHA Guidance Documents:

September 28 – Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and DOLI have collaborated on a Notification Portal for employers to report COVID-19 cases in accordance with the ETS. Using this portal will satisfy COVID-19 reporting requirements for both agencies.

September 10 – Governor Northam Announces Easing of Restrictions in Hampton Roads.

September 6 – The CDC updated their guidance for reopening restaurants and bars.

August Working with the Manufacturing Skills Institute, VMA created the VA COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard Certification Program to assist any business (manufacturing, retail, construction/engineering or service) comply with the VA COVID-19 ETS by the deadlines. Register here.

July 28 – The Governor added restrictions related to alcohol sales, restaurant hours, and social gatherings: Governor Northam Announces New Measures to Contain COVID-19 in Hampton Roads Region. The rest of Virginia remains in Phase 3.

July 15 – The Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board adopted §16VAC25-220, Emergency Temporary Standard: Infectious Disease Prevention: SARS-CoV-2 Virus That Causes COVID-19, the first-in-nation OSHA standard to address COVID-19 in workplaces. Read more from Courtney Malveaux.

June 30 – The Governor released additional restrictions for bar seating while entering Phase 3: Governor Northam Prohibits Congregating in Bars, Stresses Caution As Virginia Moves to Phase Three.

June 25 – View the updated Craft Brewery Pledge. The entire Commonwealth is expected to move into Phase 3 Reopening on July 1st.

June 18 – Governor Northam released his Phase Three Reopening Guidelines. We currently do not have a date for moving into Phase Three.

June 12 – VCBG hosted thier final all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. View the webinar here.

June 9 – Governor Northam confirmed that Loudoun County will enter Phase 2 on Friday, June 12. Review the Phase 2 Guidelines in preparation for reopening.

June 5 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. View the webinar here.

June 2 – Governor Northam announced Phase 2 guidelines to ease public health restrictions. Phase 2 will begin June 5, with the exceptions of Northern Virginia and Richmond City, which will remain in Phase 1. View the full press release here.

May 29 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. View the webinar here.

May 26 – Governor Northam announces Executive Order 63, requiring face masks to be worn indoors in public buildings. He is also directing the Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Industry (VADOLI) to develop emergency temporary standards for occupational safety that will protect employees from the spread of COVID-19 in their workplaces. These standards will address personal protective equipment, sanitation, record-keeping of incidents, and hazard communication. Upon approval from the Virginia Safety & Health Codes Board, VADOLI will be able to enforce the standards through civil penalties and business closures.

May 22 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. View the webinar here.

May 14 – Governor Northam announces a delayed Phase 1 Reopening for the City of Richmond and Accomack County.

May 14 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. This webinar was held at a unique time with the focus on Phase 1 reopening for the majority of the membership. Accomack County, Richmond City, and specific areas of Northern Virginia remain closed. View the webinar here.

May 12 – Governor Northam announces a delayed Phase 1 Reopening for Northern Virginia. This includes the counties of Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William; the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, and Manassas Park; and the towns of Dumfries, Herndon, and Vienna (Northern Virginia Region). 

May 11 – Virginia Department of Health (VDH) released guidance on ending isolation in non-health care settings and ending quarantine for exposed persons. View the Ending Isolation Guidance Graphic here.

May 8 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. They discussed the “VCBG Back to Work Plan” and “Craft Brewery Pledge.” View the webinar here.

May 2 – OSHA released Guidance for Restaurants and Beverage Vendors Offering Takeout or Curbside Pickup.

May 1 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. They discussed the next stages into the plans to reopen the state, and how those stages will impact taproom sales and safety. View the webinar here.

April 24 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. Representatives from Virginia ABC spoke on their recent response in letting breweries manufacture hand sanitizer and the Guild kicked off The Virginia Craft Beer Run, a virtual 5/10K that begins their digital marketing campaign to encourage Virginians to buy more craft beer. View the webinar here.

April 22 – VCBG announced their first ever virtual 5/10K, The Virginia Craft Beer Run, to support Virginia’s craft beer industry. View the full press release here.

April 21 – The US Department of Justice issued a warning regarding fraudulent 3M PPE. View it here.

April 17 – The White House released guidelines for reopening the country using a three-phased approach. The guidelines largely encourage states to make their own decisions based on the conditions locally. The plan calls for states to move to the first phase of reopening after exhibiting a downward trend of documented cases or positive tests over a two-week period. The guidelines also lay out important steps for both employers and individuals that are aligned with current CDC guidelines. You can see the president’s guidelines here.

April 17 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. Adam Monk, President of McClung Companies provided information on accessing PPE. View the webinar on YouTube.

April 16 – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that employers who are unable to fulfill annual testing, inspection, training, and auditing due to the COVID-19 outbreak will be granted relief as long as the company makes good faith efforts to stay in compliance. OSHA will evaluate “whether the employer makes good faith efforts to comply with applicable OSHA standards and, in situations where compliance was not possible, to ensure that employees were not exposed to hazards from tasks, processes, or equipment for which they were not prepared or trained.” Read the enforcement memorandum and OSHA-provided examples of certain tests that may qualify here.

April 16 – Governor Northam requested additional federal support for Virginia’s workers. View the press release here.

April 15 – VCBG partnered with Secret Hopper to create a comprehensive guide for How to Maximize Your Customers’ Online Experience.

April 15 – Governor Northam announced that entertainment businesses such as movie theaters and gyms must remain closed until May 8, extended a previous order set to expire April 23. View the press release here.

April 15 – CDC & CISA released Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure to a Person with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19. See also a printable flyer containing Do’s and Don’t’s for Essential Workers Exposed to COVID-19 for your workplace needs.

April 10 – VCBG hosted an all-member webinar dedicated to the COVID-19 response. Bob Morris, Executive Director of Center for Applied Innovation, provided information about Project BeerSpirits: Turning Out of Code Beers Into Hand Sanitizer. View the presentation here. View the webinar on YouTube.

April 3 – VCBG hosted the first of a series of weekly all-member webinars dedicated to the COVID-19 response. Bill Walton from the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) and Chris Van Orden from the Virginia Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provided information about employment and Small Business Administration (SBA) financing. View the VCBG’s presentation here. View SBDC’s presentation here.

April 3 – US OSHA provided enforcement guidance related to wearing protective equipment during the N95 shortage. View their press release here. They also issued guidance related to wearing protective equipment certified in other countries or jurisdictions. View that guidance memo here.

March 23 – ABC approved VCBG Regulatory Relief Request regarding the Off-Premise “Novel or Unusual Container” DefinitionView a list of acceptable containers in item #11 of this report.

March 20 – VCBG submitted to VA ABC their Regulatory Relief Request regarding the Off-Premise “Novel or Unusual Container” Definition.

March 19  – VA ABC revised decision and waived permit application requirements for all brewery delivery permits.

March 19 – VCBG hosts member webinar to review “Phase 1” regulatory relief proposal, industry best-practices and get an update on Federal affairs from Brewers Association.  Special guest – Bob Pease, CEO, BA.  View or listen to recorded webinar here.

March 19 – Virginia is made eligible for SBA Disaster Assistance Loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Criteria for financing includes:

  • Eligibility – The applicant must be physically located in a declared state/county and suffered working capital losses due to the declared disaster. 
  • Credit History – Applicants must have an acceptable credit history.
  • Repayment – Applicant must demonstrate the ability to repay the SBA loan.  The interest rates are 3.75 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for nonprofit organizations, with terms up to 30 years.  More information can be found at SBA’sCOVID-19 Disaster Assistance Loanpage. Look for local assistance near you – view the map.

March 19 – Tax payment news:

  • Sales Tax Payments may be deferred until April 20, if requested from the state. There will be no penalties and the General Assembly will be asked to repeal interest payments required by this deferral.
  • State Corporate and Individual Income Tax Payments due May 1 will be deferred until June 1 and penalties and interest will be waived pending General Assembly approval.

March 19 – US Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), released Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce.

March 18 – VCBG submits its final “Phase 1” state regulatory relief proposal to Governor Northam.

March 18 – BA calls upon Congress for a $3 billion in mitigation funding due to brewery closures.

March 18 – VCBG Leadership Council meets to finalize best-practice advisory for off-premise sales/tasting room regulation and identify “novel containers” for disposable off-premise sales authorization from VA ABC.

March 17 – ABC expedites Delivery Permit Approvals to 24 hours; Provides approval of curbside/parking lot off-premise sales for breweries.

March 17 – VCBG Leadership Council meets to develop initial state regulatory relief proposal to submit to Governor Northam.  Identifies brewery operations and supply-chain designation as “essential services” as critical priority.  Develops best-practice advisory for off-premise sales/tasting room regulation.

March 17 – VMA, VCBG, NFIB and VA Retail Federation host Coalition for a Strong Virginia Economy conference call to discuss COVID-19 industry response.

March 17 – VCBG participates in COVID-19 conference call with Northam Administration to discuss potential assistance and next steps to slow the spread of the infection.

March 16 – VCBG participates in national Guilds COVID-19 response conference call.

March 16 – VCBG submits initial regulatory relief concepts to Northam Administration and VA ABC.

March 16 – State Corporation Commission (SCC) issued 60 Day Suspension of All Disconnections.

March 12 – Virginia Governor Ralph Northam Declares State of Emergency, Outlines Additional Measures to Combat COVID-19.

Prevention and Response Recommendations

In addition to these recommendations, the Guild has created the “VCBG Back to Work Plan,” outlining necessary steps to reopen breweries, and the “Craft Brewery Pledge” (updated Dec. 1 to reflect Phase Three Reopening Guidelines).

  1. No public gatherings greater than 10 people.
  2. Maintain a 6-foot separation between employees as well as customers or contractors.
  3. 90-day moratorium on growler refills. Use crowlers and disposable containers as approved by VA ABC.
  4.  Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  6. Stay home when you are sick or have been exposed to someone that is sick.
  7. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces regularly.  Use available time to train on industrial hygiene and safety standards.  See online VCBG Quality & Safety Certification.
  8. Use facemask and other PPE as directed, particularly with off-premise sales customers. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility). View our face mask safety reminder below for CDC’s updated face mask recommendations:
  9. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; after touching machinery or vehicles; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  10. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. CDC’s handwashing website features more information about why and how to wash hands.

(Sources:  Virginia Executive Order 51; CDC; VCBG, 2019.)

Government Resources


Governor Northam’s latest COVID-19 executive actions and press release identifying manufacturing operations as “essential services”:

Find out how to help: Virginia Department of Emergency Management Services Critical Products Survey. View the Critical Products Checklist and the Contracting and Donations Guide here.

Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR):

Virginia Department of Health:

Virginia Department of Labor & Industry – Virginia Occupational Safety & Health Business Reopening Toolkit. (18 MB zip file)

Virginia Unemployment Insurance & COVID-19 FAQ – Information from Governor Northam’s Office.

Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC)

Virginia Small Business Development Center (SBDC) –


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

US Department of Homeland Security – Guidance on The Essential Critical Infrastructure.

US Department of Justice – Counterfeit PPE Warning

US FDA – Guidance on Manufacturing Hand Sanitizer


US SBA – COVID-19 Disaster Assistance Loan.

US Treasury Department – CARES Act – Paycheck Protection Program Overview

US Department of Labor – Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Questions and Answers

America’s Small Business Development Center – SBA Coronavirus Pandemic Disaster Loans Comparison Sheet.

US State Department – guidance on domestic and international travel.

Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB)

Industry Best Practices and Resources

Virginia Craft Brewers Guild

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has specific information for businesses, healthcare, laboratories, transportation, and more for responding to and preventing COVID-19 infections.

Brewers Association also offers a COVID-19 Resource Center.

Disclaimer:  The information provided herein does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials provided are for general informational purposes only and suggested guidance based on the best available information at the time.