ALBANY, NY – NYS Agriculture Chairs Senator Michelle Hinchey and Assemblymember Donna Lupardo announced that legislation they introduced to maintain farm brewery beer labeling requirements through 2028 has passed in both chambers. S7655/A7746 amends the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law in order to extend current labeling requirements. Under current law, a farm brewery can only sell “New York labeled beer” when 60% of all hops and other ingredients are NY grown. That standard was set to increase to 90% in 2024. The bill awaits action by Governor Hochul.
The extension is needed because farm brewers will be unable to meet the increasing content threshold due to limits on the availability of certain ingredients. For example, only non-proprietary hops can be grown in NY, as proprietary hops are not licensed to NY farmers. The state continued its support for Cornell University’s Hops Research and Breeding Program in the recently enacted state budget, in order to assist with the development of NY hop varieties. The $300,000 appropriation matches what was funded last year.
Senate Agriculture Chair Michelle Hinchey said, “Small, New York brewing businesses have become some of the strongest anchors of our upstate communities, creating jobs, supporting local agriculture, attracting tourism, and then reinvesting those profits back into local economies. I am always looking for ways to make it easier to do business in New York, and this bill is a strong example of how we are delivering common sense support to New York’s burgeoning craft brewing industry in a way that allows brewers to continue making great beer and adding to the vitality of our upstate communities.”
Assembly Agriculture Chair Donna Lupardo said, “In the last ten years, the number of craft brewers in NY have grown exponentially. They are tourist destinations, and a source of local pride in hundreds of communities across the state. While we are well underway creating world class NY craft beer, more time is needed for the critical NY supply chain to catch up. As always, I am happy to help assist this industry in any way I can.”
Paul Leone, NYS Brewers Association said, “With over 500 breweries in New York State currently, over half hold a farm license. The farm brewing industry has grown steadily since it was created in 2012, but it hasn’t grown quite as fast for the NYS hop, barley, and malt industries, so there was a need to push the 90% threshold set to take effect on January 1, 2024 to January 1, 2029. We thank Assemblymember Lupardo and Senator Hinchey for their leadership once again. They understand the big picture when it comes to craft beverage and agriculture and we appreciate their continued support as always.”