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ABC Violation Round-Up - Buggy Bottles

The California ABC actively enforces the alcoholic beverage laws of the state. We’ll be posting a series of “ABC Violation Round-Up” items discussing some of the violations we have seen in recent enforcement actions.

This week…. Buggy Bottles!

The Violation: Alcohol served at licensed premises cannot be contaminated, and insects such as fruit flies are considered contaminants. When the ABC does a sting on a licensed premise, it is common for the investigators to shine flashlights into the back bar liquors to check for the presence of insects. If they find insects, the bottles will be confiscated and a violation may be filed.

How to Avoid It: Check your bottles regularly for insects, especially the sugary items most likely to attract bugs. Get rid of anything with inclusions. Have your bar staff keep a log of their regular checks. Also keep records of any visits from the Department of Health. In the event you get a violation, the log from your staff or a recent “clean” visit from the Department of Health may help you get a mitigated penalty.

Statute: Penal Code 347b

Standard Penalty: Five day suspension

Alcohol.law Digest is published for general informational purposes only and is not intended as legal advice.


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