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Cuomo signs Craft New York Act, announces $3M in promotional funding

By Eric Reinhardt


ALBANY, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed the Craft New York Act that he says cuts “burdensome” requirements placed on producers and eases restrictions on the marketing of craft products.

Cuomo also launched two craft-beverage grant programs. The $3 million in promotional funding includes a $2 million craft-beverage marketing and promotion-grant program, and $1 million craft-beverage industry tourism-promotion grant.

The programs seek to “further develop” the industry and “raise the profile” of New York’s beverage producers, Cuomo’s office said in a news release.

Both the legislation and new grant programs are part of Cuomo’s promise made at the second Wine, Beer, Spirits & Cider Summit to continue to support and provide resources for this growing industry, his office said.

About the law
The Craft New York Act, which will take effect in four weeks, provides New York manufacturers with more opportunities to market their products.

Under the legislation, producers can conduct tastings and serve “by the bottle” and “by the glass,” according to the governor’s office.

It also permits farm distilleries to increase the number of retail outlets where they can sell and offer samples of their products.

The new law also lowers the food requirement that manufacturers must meet when offering tastings and consumption at their locations.

It allows farm distilleries to obtain a permit to operate a branch office, eliminating the need for a separate license.

The new law also reduces costs for small manufacturers by increasing the production cap and permitting the additional production without higher fees.

“New York produces some of the best wine, beer, spirits and cider in the world — an industry which not only creates jobs but supports farmers and brings in tourism dollars across every corner of the state,” Cuomo said in the news release. “This new law builds upon this administration’s ongoing efforts to promote this industry by cutting red tape, reducing burdensome regulations, and removing artificial barriers that stifled growth.”

Grant programs
The state created the $2 million craft-beverage marketing and promotion-grant program to increase the “profile, awareness and sales” of New York-produced wine, beer, spirits, and hard cider.

It will provide matching funds for the marketing and promotion of craft beverages.

The state will award up to $500,000 to eligible nonprofit organizations to help cover the costs associated with marketing the craft-beverage industry.

Applicants must incorporate the Taste NY initiative, Cuomo’s office said.

Empire State Development provides the funding in coordination with the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

At the same time, the $1 million craft-beverage industry tourism-promotion grant seeks to help grow tourism across New York by promoting destinations, attractions, and special events “explicitly” related to the craft-beverage industry, Cuomo’s office said.

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