We love to see the giving and charitable nature of so many in the craft beer industry. However, when advertising your support of a specific charity, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Breweries may only donate cash or beer to a federally designated 501(c)(3). Donations of merchandise, gift cards, etc. are not permitted. Additionally, donations to GoFundMe campaigns, individuals, or state non-profits without federal 501(c)(3) approval are not permitted.
- Breweries cannot tie the donation to the sale of alcohol. In other words, “1% of sales to Charity X” is not permissible advertising under California ABC rules. You can advertise that you support a various cause or charity, but any promotion, label, website posting, Facebook message, etc. that ties the donation to the sale of alcohol is not allowed.
- Cause-related marketing has specific regulations in California that must be followed. If you are doing formal fundraising as per an agreement with a specific charity, you need to make sure you are following those rules.
*This advice is specific to California Breweries. Please consult an attorney in your state to see what laws are applicable to you.