Shipping Alcohol Made Easy

09/20/2022 by Turner Lee

Shipping Alcohol Made Easy

Whether you’re at a local restaurant, a holiday party, or spending a Friday night on the town, you, or someone you know is having a drink. And no, we’re not talking about a glass of water or soda. We’re talking about alcohol, including beer, wine, spirits, liquors, and liqueurs. What does it take to get alcohol from manufacturing plants to stores and restaurants for consumers?  In order to ship alcohol safely, there are many rules and regulations to follow.   

Do We Even Drink That Much? 

In the United States alone, people who are 21 years and older consumed 7.8 billion gallons of alcohol in 2018, according to a report by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Breaking this down, means 6.3 billion gallons of beer, 900 million gallons of wine, and 570 million gallons of spirits consumed. So, shipping alcohol is a continued need and one that is only going to grow. Since the pandemic hit in 2020, the volume of consumed alcohol increased at least two percent year-over-year.  

The Production 

In the United States alone, the alcohol beverage industry handles more than 4 million jobs and generates almost $70 billion in revenue. This number is only going to grow but beers, wine, and spirits are all different for the consumer.  


This sector has been dominated by big brand names ever since the beginning. Big brands like Bud Light, Coors Light, Budweiser, and Corona all make life hard for those small-town local breweries. 

While 2021 was a record year for small-town businesses with 710 openings and only 176 of their doors closing across all 50 states, they still face a tall hill to climb. In this situation, it’s David versus Goliath. Big beer companies have the brand reputation, the capital, the marketing, and all the business. Therefore, small breweries must compete not only with them but with other small local breweries to make it in the industry. 

However, with everything against them, many consumers prefer a unique-tasting beer compared to the very recognizable Bud Light can.  

While small breweries open their doors to everyone, their target audience for their beer is individuals in their twenties, thirties, and early forties. These individuals (especially Millennials) are more likely to try new drinks and prefer ones that have different flavor profiles such as sweet, salty, sour, hoppy, spicy, and more. This shows because, in 2021, the volume growth in small breweries grew by 7.9 percent and produced 24.5 million barrels of beer.  


The wine market is as competitive as the beer field, where big brand names are a household stable with new vineyards and wineries opening across the United States.  

Some of the biggest names in this sector are Franzia, Barefoot Cellars, Twin Valley, and more. The wine sector is expected to see significant growth. In 2021, the market was worth $417.85 billion and is expected to grow 6.4 percent year over year. So, while one may face the challenge of competing with big brand names, if a quality product is produced, there is great potential. 


The spirits industry also referred to as hard liquor, is a sector that made $135.78 billion in 2021. This sector has a lot more variety, including spirits such as vodka, tequila, rum, whiskey, gin, and more. Within each of these categories, they all have well-known competitors, meaning each one presents unique and complex challenges for those within the sector.  

But, How Does Shipping Alcohol Work? 

Whether you make beer or spirits or are a big brand name or a small business, one thing is for sure, you NEED to ship your product out to the consumers. But what does it take to ship alcohol? 

When shipping alcohol you must have certain permits and meet regulations to ship it safely and most importantly, legally in the United States.  

What Are the Regulations for Shipping Alcohol? 

Here is where things get tricky. When shipping alcohol, you must follow certain rules, but the United States does not have one set of rules for transporting alcohol. This means that all 50 states in the U.S. have different rules and regulations to follow. For example, in Delaware, carriers must abide by the Delaware Office of Alcohol Beverage Control Commissioner rules but carriers traveling through New Mexico must follow the Alcoholic Beverage Control.  

Before arranging your shipment of alcohol, you must be aware of each state’s regulations for the transportation of it. Find out what you need to know about a certain state’s requirements by clicking on the link below: 

AlabamaAlabama ABC Board, Enforcement Division  
AlaskaAlaska Alcohol & Marijuana Control Office 
ArizonaArizona Department of Liquor, Licenses, & Control 
ArkansasArkansas Alcoholic Beverage Control Division 
CaliforniaCalifornia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control 
ColoradoDepartment of Revenue, Liquor, Enforcement Division  
ConnecticutDepartment of consumer Protection, Division of Liquor Control 
DelawareDelaware Office of Alcoholic Beverage Control Commissioner 
District of ColombiaAlcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration 
FloridaFlorida Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco 
GeorgiaDepartment of Revenue, Alcohol & Tobacco Tax Division 
HawaiiLiquor Commission City and County of Honolulu 
Department of Liquor Control County of Hawaii 
Department of Liquor Control County of Kauai 
Department of Liquor Control of Maui 
IdahoIdaho State Liquor Dispensary 
IllinoisIllinois Liquor Control Commission 
IndianaIndiana Alcoholic Beverage Commission 
IowaIowa Liquor Commission, alcohol Beverages Control 
KansasKansas Department of Revenue, Alcoholic Beverage Control 
KentuckyOffice of Alcoholic Beverage Control 
LouisianaOffice of Alcohol and Tobacco 
MaineDepartment of Public Safety, Alcohol Control Board 
MarylandMaryland Alcohol Licensing Association 
MassachusettsAlcoholic Beverage Control Commission 
MichiganLiquor Control Commission, Licensing & Enforcement Division 
MinnesotaMinnesota Liquor Control Division 
MississippiAlcoholic Beverage Control Division 
MissouriDivision of Alcohol and Tobacco Control 
MontanaMontana Department of Revenue, Liquor Division 
NebraskaNebraska Liquor Control Division 
NevadaDepartment of Taxation, Revenue Division 
New HampshireNew Hampshire State Liquor Commission 
New JerseyDivision of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Department of Law & Public Safety 
New MexicoAlcoholic Beverage Control 
New YorkNew York State Liquor Authority District Office 
North CarolinaAlcoholic Beverage Control Commission 
North DakotaOffice of the State Tax Commissioner, Alcohol Tax Section 
OhioOhio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control 
OklahomaOklahoma Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission 
OregonOregon Liquor Control Commission 
PennsylvaniaPennsylvania Liquor Control Board, Bureau of Licensing 
Rhode IslandDepartment of Business Regulation, Commercial Licensing 
South CarolinaDepartment of Revenue & Taxation, Alcohol Control Board 
South DakotaDepartment of Revenue & Regulation, Special Taxes Division 
TennesseTennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission 
TexasTexas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, Capitol Station 
UtahDepartment of Alcoholic Beverage Control 
VermontDepartment of Liquor Control 
VirginiaVirginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority 
WashingtonState of Washington, Liquor Control Board 
West VirginiaWest Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control Administration, Licensing Division 
WisconsinWisconsin Department of Revenue, Alcohol & Tobacco Enforcement 
WyomingWyoming Liquor Division 

Making Shipping Alcohol Easy with a 3PL 

No matter if your company is big or small, selling beer or wine, everyone must follow these rules when shipping alcohol. However, ensuring the carrier has the proper permits can be a pain-stacking task. By using a 3PL, like Trinity Logistics, you’ll gain access to a network of strong carrier relationships and Team Member experts with experience in the regulations for shipping alcohol. 

Working with a 3PL means you’ll have someone on your side to help all the backend logistics work so you can focus on making and selling the best product. Plus, we offer a variety of shipping solutions for you, from less-than-truckload shipments to temperature-controlled intermodal, we have the shipping solution you need. 

Get connected with us today so you can start having Trinity Logistics, a Burris Logistics Company, on your side.