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It All Goes Back to Prohibition: How the Modern Spirits Industry Was Born

Unlike other areas of law, alcohol beverage law is the product of a historic moment in time – Prohibition. Understanding how Prohibition shaped and attempted to solve for perceived evils will help inform how these concepts play out and at times bump up against modern realities. Alcohol beverage laws and concepts, such as “tied house” and “trade practices,” can be counterintuitive in the modern market. Understanding the origins of these laws provides a foundation for understanding how they are viewed and enforced by regulators today.

Learning Outcomes:
1. Understand the Prohibition movement, the 18th Amendment and its resolution with the 21st Amendment
2. Gain an appreciation for the historical context of Prohibition, the perceived “evils” it was enacted to solve, and how those issues were later balanced under the repeal
3. Review the key structures for the marketing and sale of alcohol coming out of Prohibition, in both on the licensed and control state structures

Richard Blau
Chair, Alcohol Beverage & Food Law Department
GrayRobinson, P.A.

Art DeCelle
Senior Counsel
Lehrman Beverage Law, PLLC

Jo Moak
Executive Vice President and General Counsel
Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America, Inc. (WSWA)

CLE credit available in select jurisdictions.