LANSING – The Michigan Beer and Wine Wholesalers Association today applauded the governor for signing Senate Bill 1088 into law, which will rein in illegal shipments of wine into the state.
“We applaud the governor for signing this legislation into law, which will provide the state with additional tools to weed out bad apples and crack down on illegal wine shipments into our state,” said Spencer Nevins, president of the Michigan Beer and Wine Wholesalers Association. “This new law also ensures Michiganders can still purchase the wines they love and have them shipped to their homes from wineries across the United States or a retailer right here in Michigan.”
For years, online wine retailers and so-called “wine clubs” have been illegally shipping wine into Michigan, which has deprived the state of millions of dollars in much-needed tax revenue that could go towards repairing roads, public safety or education. A comprehensive study conducted by the Hill Group in 2015 found an estimated $64 million worth of wine is purchased from third parties and shipped illegally into the state annually.
The law requires common carriers that deliver alcoholic beverages into Michigan, such as FedEx or UPS, to report to the state what was shipped and where it was purchased. This reporting will allow for better tracking of illegal wine shipments into the state. The law also allows third party delivery apps to operate in Michigan.
“This law makes confirming that wine shipments coming into Michigan are being shipped by a licensed winery, in accordance with the law, a top priority,” said Nevins.###