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  1. #31
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Quote Originally Posted by Brisko View Post
    Is it possible that Templeton is unaware of the regulation? They have at least one youtube video that is quite open about their "partnership" with then-LDI. I can't link it easily from my tablet but it's the one with "Lifecycle Project" in the title. It's not so much that I want to rat on them as I want to know that I can trust that labels, not just theirs, are accurate.
    Very unlikely that Templeton doesn't know the rules.

    I get that the TTB doesn't have the resources to actively police these things, and I can grasp how easily the industry could self-regulate prior to the craft movement.

    Here's a question, totally unrelated to TR: what if a producer welched on an age statement? How would it be caught? I'm not thinking so much of 6 year old juice in an 8 year old label (though that's one scenario) but rather maybe 3 year old stock in an NAS? Do the produces have to maintain records to prove such things?
    I don't know the full extent of the distillery data available to TTB but I know that they keep track of taxes paid, using computer data of barrels filled, barrels dumped, etc. But, yes, the distillery's records would show this and the TTB probably has access to that data. They pretty much have to be able to account for every barrel for tax purposes.

    As for trying to beat the reg, what many people don't appreciate is that the ability to keep secrets declines in direct proportion to the number of people who know the secret. It would be hard to put significant quantities of an underage whiskey into a product without a lot of people knowing about it. It would be a hard secret to keep.

    From my experience, the majors tend to be very scrupulous about abiding by the rules because the consequences of not are so potentially grave. Some micro-producers, on the other hand, have an 'outlaw' mentality that hates authority and tries to see how much they can get away with. I imagine at some point there will be something serious that will result in a temporary or even permanent loss of license and that will get people's attention. I know the Templeton folks took pleasure in jerking me around about the source of their whiskey in the early days, so I wouldn't put anything past them.

  2. #32
    Advanced Taster
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveOfAtl View Post
    No reason to doubt what the TTB told you, but what they told you orally carries even less weight than the BAM, which is more of an official interpretation of the relevant regs.
    I agree completely. Which is why I sent in formulations for our whiskies which are tied to our label approval. I told them, in writing, that our whiskies would not exceed 2 years of age (for the bottlings in question). They approved the formula as well as the NAS COLA. I was merely sharing the story of how I confirmed that the age statement requirement only applies to straight whiskey.

    The word straight means 2 years or older. If you don't see the word straight on a NAS label, you know it's less than two years old. So in other words: NAS Straight Whiskey is 4 years or older. NAS Whisky is less than two years old. That is how it was explained to me. Just trying to share the info.

    Edited for clarity.

  3. #33
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    This has always puzzled me and that's the best explanation I've heard.

  4. #34
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Thanks for the explanation Leopold. That makes a lot of sense. You should write regulations in your spare time.

  5. #35
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Spare time? What the hell is that? : )

    I have handled all the COLA's for our wine, beer, and spirits for years... so it's second nature now. What I've learned is that the regulations don't saw what you think it does, so you have to read them very carefully... and try and avoid the contradictions in the way they are laid out and the way they read.

    The TTB views (or at least, they did a decade ago) Straight Whiskey as hallowed ground. You don't get the honor of putting an age statement on that bottle if it isn't straight.... which makes sense in a way, and explains why you can't put age statements on flavored whiskey (something we make). Flavored Whiskey is a lower class, with straight whiskey being the gold standard for the TTB. I sort of like their way of thinking on the matter.... although the only problem is that few consumers know what the heck straight whiskey is anymore.

  6. #36
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Thanks for the clarification on age statements. To the original question: Templeton makes no secret (nowadays) of the source of their whiskey. They write on their website that "this distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana continues to be their trusted distillation partner today."

    Now, off the top of my head I know that KBD labels the state of distillation rule on the Willett Ryes, and I know that McCormick does too with their Platte Valley corn whiskey and their straight bourbon. There may be others. The rectifier out in Park City uses a slightly different tack: they use what the BAM refers to as a "dispelling statement" that lets the customer know that, no, Rocky Mountain Rye (for example) wasn't distilled in the Rocky Mountains. Not sure why Templeton can't do the same.
    Life's too short, and there's too much good whiskey within reach.

  7. #37
    Mr. Anal Retentive Bourbon Drinker
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Quote Originally Posted by wadewood View Post
    OK Cowdery, I took your advice and wrote Thomas Hogue a very polite email asking about the distilled in state requirement.
    It's been a week and no response, I guess an ordinary consumer does not deserve an answer?

    thomas.hogue@ttb.gov

    Thomas,


    I was hoping you could provide some clarification on 27 CFR 5.36 (d), which includes this:


    "State of distillation shall be shown on the label of any whisky produced in the United States if the whisky is not distilled in the State given in the address on the brand label."


    As a consumer, i find it very confusing that whiskeys are being sold with information on the labels that contradict information that I know to be correct about where this product was distilled.


    As noted, I'm a consumer, not a lawyer, and perhaps there is more to it than the statement above.


    Thank you,

    Wade Woodard

  8. #38
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Re: Templeton Labeling, or Another TTB failure

    Oh well. Government agencies can be inscrutable. Even if you don't get a reply, I think it's great when consumers query the TTB about these things. In addition to being a government agency, their mission is consumer protection, so it would seem like they should be responsive to consumer concerns. We should all keep beating the drums.

 

 

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