Creating a Commercial Label
Have you grown from home brewer, to home brewery and need to create a label that will pass the government's tests?
GrogTag labels are made for fun, and so we thumb our nose at government regulations. Who cares if some of our jokes are hard to read due to small fonts… hell that just makes it more fun for us and most home brewers.
But the funny thing is that in our professional lives, we secretly love all the required content and rules (don’t confront me in public with this – I like to complain like the rest of us). There is something about the required items that are a large part of what makes a label look ‘real’. This is why we often include ounces, and other story elements on our GrogTag labels.
I remember an interview with the makers of South Park when they thanked the FCC for making their show funnier. Their point was each time the government had an issue with the show, they would make it more crude and more over-the-top and invariably the men-in-black would approve it. It can be funny and sickly motivating. What’s funny is that these regulations define much of the things that make a label look ‘real’.
It’s even funnier when you are dealing with a written law that two bureaucrats interpret totally differently, just because one of them hates the color red because there ex husband used to be a fireman.Think I am kidding? If it didn’t pass one day, just find a different agent, or call the first one and wait to resubmit when they are having a great day.
So if you want to make your label ‘legal’ or are looking at selling your brew and need a legit label, here are some resources. Below are reglations having to do with federal requirements. Be sure to check out your state’s requirements as well—often times they will different. For instance, California is usually more strict that the feds.
- www.brewersassociation.org—these guys know what they are doing and have a lot of great resources for just these sort of things
- go to the source: www.ttb.gov—they have the Beverage Alcohol Manual (BAM) that has everything you’ll need to start
- It’s not a bad starting technique to grab a bottle of your favorite (similar brew, i.e. from your area with similar beer) brew and duplicate their sizes etc. After all they probably hired a packaging consultant for 10K, so you know it is right.
Good luck, we hope this helps.