The laws regarding wine shipping have been an obstacle that many small wineries such as ours have struggled against as they try to grow their business. Over the years, the hardest thing for us to tell a customer is, “Even though you live in Indiana, we can’t ship to you.” As much as we’d love to ship to everyone who asks, our hands have been tied by the burden of the law requiring a face-to-face initial transaction prior to shipping. Likewise, enthusiastic potential customers have been unable to pick up the phone and order wine, join our wine club or send wine as gifts because because they don’t have a form on file. Add to this the burden of collecting this information from every customer and potential customer and saving it in an eternal database with no expiration date.
We are grateful and pleased that the legislature managed to pass a wine shipping law for Hoosier wineries before closing the most recent session. Even better, Governor Pence signed the bill into law. The law, which becomes effective on July 1, 2015, removes this face-to-face initial transaction requirement. Of course there are logistics to figure out to ensure that only adults of age order and receive the wine, but this step is huge for allowing small family wineries like French Lick Winery to expand our sales and grow.
For more information, please follow our friend and voice in the wine industry, Howard W. Hewitt .