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Michigan Craft Beverage Council Announces Application Period for 2025 Qualified Small Distiller Program

By Jennifer Holton

The Michigan Craft Beverage Council (MCBC) announced the opening of the application period for the Qualified Small Distiller program. The online application is open from May 13, 2024, to June 14, 2024. Supporting diverse economic streams is an agricultural business development priority in Michigan, said Tim Boring, Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Director and MCBC Chair. As our thriving craft distilling industry continues to grow and encourage homegrown agriculture is a great example of how to maximize small grains for value-added production.

PA 135 of 2022, signed into law by Governor Gretchen Whitmer, aims to assist Michigan's growing craft distillery industry by lowering mark up costs on bottles of spirits produced with at least 40 percent Michigan-grown grain. This supports Michigan farmers and allows craft distillers to invest back into their companies to help create jobs and strengthen small businesses. The legislation states Michigan's small distillers, or an out-of-state entity that is the equivalent of a small distiller, may file an application with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development to be certified as a Qualified Small Distiller. Qualified distillers applying for this certification may be eligible for a reduced mark-up beginning January 1, 2025.

"Since 2019, Michigan Craft Beverage Council has invested more than $2 million to support the state's growing craft beverage industries, including numerous projects focused on distilling grains," said Jenelle Jagmin, MCBC Director. "These investments support the state's small grain farmers with information they need to select and grow location-appropriate grain varieties."

Source : michigan.gov

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