What a great way to start the weekend…Today I found out that our TTB application has been approved! This means that we now have our federal license to brew beer commercially. Of course, we still need our state brewer’s license from the ABC, and then the building permits to actually put together our facility, but hey…we’re now one big step closer!
The TTB (or Tax and Trade Bureau) is the arm of the federal government that regulates the manufacturing of alcohol and other sorts of things (it used to be called the ATF…). The application process was a bit involved, but nowhere near as bad as the application for our Conditional Use Permit. Basically they ask you a bunch of questions about your proposed operations, such as solid waste and waste water considerations, energy usage, type and extent of security considerations, and a general overview of the operation. Then they do an extensive background check, including checking on the source of your financing. I suppose the reason for this is that they want to make sure some criminal isn’t financing your brewery. The final step is a telephone interview where they go over most of the same questions. From what I gather, the federal government isn’t too concerned about all the specific details of your operation, but they just want to make sure that you’re paying your taxes, and that none of your beer is stolen.
Another bit of good news is that I submitted our building plans to the Department of Building & Safety today. I wasn’t able to do this until we had our approval from the Health Department, so it felt good to finally be able to submit it. Anyway, this will be the final step before we can start the construction phase, so it seems like we can finally see the home stretch! They said it will take about two weeks for them to complete the plan check, but I think I’ve heard that story a few times before….I’ll keep you all posted when I actually get a response though.