It’s not too late to send your beer to DC for CBC, but you need to hurry up!

The Craft Brewer’s Conference is just over a month away. If you are thinking about sending beer to DC for one or more of the awesome events taking place that week (and you should), you need to get moving. DC has some amazing laws in place that allow you to send beer direct to retailers in DC, without hiring a distributor. To send beer to DC, here is what you need to do:

  1. GET YOUR COLAS: If you haven’t already done so, you will need to get a Certificate of Label Approval (“COLA”) from TTB for each of your beer labels. TTB requires label approval for all beers sold across state lines. TTB’s current processing time is 15 days (as of the writing of this article, check the current estimate here).
    1. DO YOU ALSO NEED A FORMULA? If you are using “non-traditional” ingredients, you may also need a formula approval from TTB. Read more here. TTB’s processing time for formula approvals is listed here. If you are worried about getting label and formula approvals in place before CBC, we can probably help. Send us an email (see below).
  2. LOCK IN YOUR RESTAURANTS/BARS: DC retailers can import beer directly from out-of-state brewers. To do so, they will have to get import permits from ABRA (and pay excise taxes on the beer coming in).
  3. FIND A CARRIER: There are dozens or hundreds of logistics companies that can help find a carrier to pick up your beer, and deliver it to your retailer. The retailer you get in touch with might also have some ideas about who other brewers have used in the past.

Find out more about some of the great events happening in DC during CBC here.

We can help you get everything in place in time. Give us a call at 202-449-3739 x708 to find out how, or email

About Dan

Daniel Christopherson of is a beer and trademark attorney at Lehrman Beverage Law. He is an avid craft beer enthusiast who helps new and established breweries develop their business models, comply with the TTB and FDA, and protect their intellectual property.
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