Last Month, New Jersey’s Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) issued a special ruling authorizing third-party delivery pertmitees to deliver alcoholic beverages to customers’ doorsteps, including cocktails “to go”, from local bars and restaurants. In doing so, New Jersey’s three-tier system embraces local, licensed delivery in the modern e-commerce marketplace, while including important measures for public health and safety.
For New Jersey residents, the ruling allows consumers 21 years of age or older to have same-day access to a wide variety of authentic alcoholic products from a locally licensed retailer. At the same time, the ruling ensures collection and remittance of state taxes and provides local oversight and enforcement over the retailer and delivery company. This oversight includes having the third-party delivery company establish procedures for:
- Providing alcohol compliance training and certification to workers delivering alcoholic beverages;
- Verifying that customers are of legal age and not visibly intoxicated;
- Recording and preserving all information related to the order and delivery of alcoholic beverages; and
- Refusing delivery and returning alcoholic beverages to retail licensees when necessary.
During the delivery of alcoholic beverages, the ruling clearly prohibits the delivery employee from leaving the product unattended, delivering to customers who are under the legal drinking age or are intoxicated, and delivering to a college campus.
WSWA has long championed responsible alcohol delivery, and the New Jersey ruling is an example of what smart and responsible alcohol regulation can look like as states consider alcohol e-commerce options for consumers. WSWA supports legislation and rulemaking that provides safe e-commerce, locally licensed delivery solutions that help protect the public from the impacts of irresponsible consumption. We look forward to consumers having access to the wide variety of products that New Jersey’s family-owned wholesalers bring to local retailer’s shelves and will continue to support measures to protect the three-tier system.
Questions about Responsible Alcohol Delivery in Your State? Contact a member of the WSWA State Affairs Team Chelsea Crucitti (firstname.lastname@example.org), Audrey Ramsden (email@example.com), Willis Reid (firstname.lastname@example.org), or Colin Phillips (email@example.com).