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Home Distilling Laws: Is It Illegal To Make Moonshine in Missouri?

on Jun 10, 2014

The Following Questions Will Be Answered In This Article:

Missouri Moonshine Laws

Is it legal to own a non-alcohol producing still (for water purification, etc.)?

  • Yes.  Since it is legal to use a still for limited home consumption, it clearly is not illegal to possess a still.  To be subject to prosecution the still would have to be involved in alcohol production in excess of the home consumption limitations and without a state issued permit.
      • What is charge (felony, misdemeanor, etc.)  N/A
      • What is maximum fine?  N/A
      • What is maximum jail time?  N/A
      • Can still be seized?  N/A
      • Can additional property be seized?  N/A


Is it legal to distill alcohol without possession of a commercial distiller’s permit or a fuel alcohol permit? 

  • Yes, limited right for home use only.  Missouri Statute 311.055 provides that, “No person at least twenty-one years of age shall be required to obtain a license to manufacture intoxicating liquor, as defined in section 311.020, for personal or family use. The aggregate amount of intoxicating liquor manufactured per household shall not exceed two hundred gallons per calendar year if there are two or more persons over the age of twenty-one years in such household, or one hundred gallons per calendar year if there is only one person over the age of twenty-one years in such household. Any intoxicating liquor manufactured under this section may not be offered for sale”.  This section is in conflict with Section 311.050, which says, “It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, partnership or corporation to manufacture, sell or expose for sale in this state intoxicating liquor, as defined in Section 311.020, in any quantity, without taking out a license”.  Because Section 311.055 is directed toward a specific circumstance, it should be controlling and should be considered an exception to Section 311.050.

If not legal:

  • What is charge (felony, misdemeanor, etc.)  N/A
  • What is maximum fine?  N/A
  • What is maximum jail time?  N/A
  • Can still be seized? N/A
  • Can additional property be seized?  N/A

What is the penalty for possessing / and or selling illegally produced spirits without a permit?

  • What is charge (felony, misdemeanor, etc.)  Missouri Statute Section 311.868 provides that penalties for violations of the statutes relating to manufacturing and distilling liquor shall be governed only by that Section.  It mandates fines and not imprisonment, but it does not indicate whether it is a felony or misdemeanor.  Most misdemeanors do not, however, have fines this large, so these violations may be considered to be felonies.
  • What is maximum fine?  First offense, ten thousand dollars; Second offense, twenty-five thousand dollars; and for the Third and subsequent offenses, fifty thousand dollars.
  • What is maximum jail time?  None
  • Can property be seized?  Yes.  All illegally manufactured liquor , stills and related equipment, mash, etc.  Missouri Statute Section 311.810.2.


Is a commercial distillery permit available? 

Yes.

  • Cost of commercial distillery permit?  Missouri Statute Section 311.180. 1 says, “No person, partnership, association of persons or corporation shall manufacture, distill, blend, sell or offer for sale intoxicating liquor within this state at wholesale or retail, or solicit orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor within this state without procuring a license from the supervisor of alcohol and tobacco control authorizing them so to do. For such license there shall be paid to and collected by the director of revenue annual charges as follows: … 2) For the privilege of manufacturing in this state intoxicating liquor containing not in excess of twenty-two percent of alcohol by weight and the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor containing not in excess of twenty-two percent of alcohol by weight, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of two hundred dollars; For the privilege of manufacturing, distilling or blending intoxicating liquor of all kinds within this state and the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor of all kinds, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of four hundred and fifty dollars;…… 5) For the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor containing not in excess of twenty-two percent of alcohol by weight, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of one hundred dollars; (6) For the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor of all kinds, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of two hundred and fifty dollars;…. 8) For the privilege of selling intoxicating liquor containing not in excess of twenty-two percent of alcohol by weight by a wholesaler to a person duly licensed to sell such intoxicating liquor at retail and the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor containing not in excess of twenty-two percent of alcohol by weight, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of two hundred dollars; (9) For the privilege of selling intoxicating liquor of all kinds by a wholesaler to a person duly licensed to sell such intoxicating liquor at retail and the privilege of selling to duly licensed wholesalers and soliciting orders for the sale of intoxicating liquor of all kinds, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler within this state, the sum of five hundred dollars, except that a license authorizing the holder to sell to duly licensed wholesalers and to solicit orders for sale of intoxicating liquor, to, by or through a duly licensed wholesaler, shall not entitle the holder thereof to sell within the state of Missouri, direct to retailers;
  • Location of commercial distillery permit application online?  All License Applications and bond forms, etc. may be found at the Missouri Alcohol and Tobacco Control website at  http://www.atc.dps.mo.gov/licensing/liquor_mfgr_solicitor.asp


Is a fuel alcohol permit available? 

  • Yes.  A Supplier’s License permits, among other activities, the production of fuel grade alcohol or alcohol-derivative substances.  Must also obtain a Federal Permit for distilling ethanol.
  • Cost of fuel alcohol permit?  I don’t find a specific filing fee.  An applicant must provide a Bond based on estimated number of gallons of product annually and that is computed on the License Application form.
  • Location of fuel alcohol permit application online?  Missouri Department of Revenue License Form 795 and can be found at http://dor.mo.gov/forms/795.pdf

 

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