California wine laws passed

Sacramento, Calif.—Wineries will be able to offer samples of their wares at farmers markets, and underage winemaking students at California colleges can taste wine after state lawmakers passed two new laws

On July 8, Gov. Jerry Brown’s office announced that Brown had signed into law Assembly Bill 2488, which allows limited wine and cider tastings at certified farmers markets. Introduced by Assemblyman Mark Levine, the bill would allow a vintner or cider maker to provide samples of their beverages to customers. Samples are limited to 3 ounces and must be poured in an area separated from the rest of the farmers market.

AB 1989 would let students older than 18 yet younger than 21 who are enrolled in winemaking programs at state universities and community colleges sample, but not consume, wine for education purposes. The University of California sponsored the bill, which was introduced by Assemblyman Wes Chesbro. The bill passed in the Assembly on May 15 and was approved by the Senate on June 30. Gov. Brown is expected to sign the legislation into law that would take effect January 2015.

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