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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 3. Alcoholic Beverage and Cannabis Control
Agency 5. Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority
Chapter 70. Other Provisions

3VAC5-70-100. Gifts of alcoholic beverages generally; exceptions; wine and beer tastings; taxes and records.

A. Gifts of alcoholic beverages by a licensee to any other person are prohibited except as otherwise provided in this section or as provided in §§ 4.1-119 G, 4.1-201, 4.1-201.1, 4.1-206.3, 4.1-209, 4.1-215, 4.1-325, and 4.1-325.2 of the Code of Virginia.

B. Gifts of alcoholic beverages may be made by licensees as follows:

1. Personal friends. Gifts may be made to personal friends as a matter of normal social intercourse when in no wise a shift or device to evade the provisions of this section.

2. Samples. A representative of a wholesaler, winery, brewery, or importer may give a retail licensee a sample serving or a container not then sold by such licensee of wine or beer if (i) the licensee is licensed to sell such product, provided that in the case of containers, the container does not exceed 52 fluid ounces in size (1.5 liters if in a metric-sized container) and (ii) the label bears the word "Sample" in lettering of reasonable size. Such samples may not be sold. For good cause shown the board may authorize a larger sample container. Samples must be obtained from licensed wholesalers or purchased from retail licensees in the Commonwealth.

3. Gifts by retail licensees. An on-premises retail licensee may give a gift of one alcoholic beverage to a patron or one bottle of wine to a group of two or more patrons provided that such gifts are made to patrons to whom such alcoholic beverages may be sold. No subsequent gift shall be provided to the same patrons within 24 hours.

4. Hospitality rooms; conventions. The following activities are permitted:

a. A brewer or vintner may give samples of his products to visitors to his winery or brewery for consumption on premises only in a hospitality room approved by the board, provided the donees are persons to whom such products may be lawfully sold; and

b. A manufacturer, importer, bottler, broker, or wholesaler may host an event at conventions of national, regional or interstate associations or foundations organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, literary, civil affairs, educational or national purposes upon the premises occupied by such licensee, or upon property of the licensee contiguous to such premises, or in a development contiguous to such premises, owned and operated by the licensee or a wholly owned subsidiary.

5. Conventions; educational programs, including alcoholic beverage tastings; research; licensee associations. Manufacturers, importers, bottlers, brokers, and wholesalers may donate alcoholic beverages to:

a. A convention, trade association or similar gathering, composed of licensees and their guests, when the alcoholic beverages donated are intended for consumption during the convention;

b. Retail licensees attending a bona fide educational program relating to the alcoholic beverages being given away;

c. Research departments of educational institutions, or alcoholic research centers, for the purpose of scientific research on alcoholism; and

d. Official associations of alcoholic beverage industry members when conducting a bona fide educational program concerning alcoholic beverages, with no promotion of a particular brand, for members and guests of particular groups, associations, or organizations.

6. Conditions. Exceptions authorized by subdivisions 4 b and 5 of this subsection are conditioned upon the following:

a. That prior written notice of the activity be submitted to the board describing it and giving the date, time and place of such activity; and

b. That the activity be conducted in a room or rooms set aside for that purpose and be adequately supervised.

C. Wine and beer wholesalers may participate in a wine or beer tasting sponsored by a gourmet shop licensee for its customers and may provide educational material, oral or written, pertaining thereto, as well as participate in the pouring of such wine or beer.

D. Any gift authorized by this section shall be subject to the taxes imposed on sales by Title 4.1 of the Code of Virginia, and complete and accurate records shall be maintained.

Statutory Authority

§ 4.1-111 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR125-01-7 § 10, eff. December 12, 1985; amended, Virginia Register Volume 3, Issue 1, eff. November 12, 1986; Volume 5, Issue 2, eff. November 24, 1988; Volume 6, Issue 2, eff. November 23, 1989; Volume 7, Issue 4, eff. December 19, 1990; Volume 8, Issue 6, eff. January 15, 1992; Volume 9, Issue 6, eff. January 13, 1993; Volume 10, Issue 11, eff. March 23, 1994; Volume 23, Issue 13, eff. May 19, 2007; Volume 30, Issue 6, eff. December 18, 2013; Volume 32, Issue 20, eff. July 15, 2016; Volume 32, Issue 21, eff. July 28, 2016; Volume 38, Issue 1, eff. January 1, 2022.

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