The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. BATF is a division of the United States Treasury Department and is responsible for the overseeing and regulation of the American wine industry.
It describes its mission thusly: “The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) is a multi-mission Treasury bureau responsible for carrying out compliance and law enforcement duties in alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives. ” As part of its alcohol responsibilities, ATF:
- Approves labels and monitors advertising.
- Regulates labeling, marking, packaging, and branding of all domestic distilled spirits, wine and beer sold in the United States.
- Regulates production in the United States and the importations of all alcohol beverages, including distilled spirits, malt beverages, and wine.
- Ensures to the best of its ability that an alcohol beverage label accurately reflects the contents in the container.
- Approves viticultural areas.
- Checks alcohol beverages for compliance with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decisions concerning food additives and colorings.
- Cooperates with FDA in instances in which hazardous or extraneous materials are detected in alcohol beverage products, acts to recall such products and publicly announces the recall.”