Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Weird Whiskey Regulations: The No Flag Rule


 File this under the weird rules department.  Did you know that according to 27 CFR 5.42(b)(7) of the TTB regulations for distilled spirits:
Labels shall not contain any statement, design, device, or pictorial representation which the appropriate TTB officer finds relates to, or is capable of being construed as relating to, the armed forces of the United States, or the American flag, or any emblem, seal, insignia, or decoration associated with such flag or armed forces;
The only TTB ruling I found dealing with this provision involved a retailer who wanted to put stickers on bottles "bearing the slogan 'Fight Communism' and pictures of the Statue of Liberty and of the American flag with its staff transfixing a bleeding serpent." Classy! The TTB nixed the flag but said the rest of it was good to go, so I guess bleeding serpents are okay.

Of course, as with most rules, the TTB seems pretty lax about it these days, letting at least a few flags and military themes slip through.


10 comments:

David D said...

That's interesting. Google search the Privateer Rum label. We had it briefly in the store.

sku said...

Interesting. Stripes but not stars must have been vague enough to pass muster.

sam k said...

Then there's that Svedka "Fourth of July" bottle that looks suspiciously like it was based on the American flag.

Anonymous said...

https://www.ttbonline.gov/colasonline/viewColaDetails.do?action=publicFormDisplay&ttbid=12199001000400

Anonymous said...

I suppose anything goes with exports: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stars-Stripes-Bourbon/198651970179908

sku said...

Anon @ 12:41, that's correct, the regulations do not apply to exports.

Anon @ 12:39, while the regulation I cited above applies to distilled spirits, there is an identical regulation for wine labels so that would appear to be a violation.

Anonymous said...

just down the road from me

http://4spiritsdistillery.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/8.jpg

Being a Vet I find this offensive. I don't think the symbolism should be exploited.

Josh said...

I guess the Maker's bottle with the Army Combat Uniform camo on the label got a pass. It came with a dog tag and all.

http://makersmarkbottles.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/kgrhqvhje4ewco-yvrbp2g7jst0g60_57-294x300.jpg

Anonymous said...

Goddam, those four bottles make me feel patriotic!!

Anonymous said...

How about the Jim Beam White "Operation Homefront" Label? It has a star and red/white stripes which recalls the USAF emblem?