Giving Away Beer For Free

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Hi guys,

I've been brewing beer for a while and seem to just stock my beer.

I'd like to be able to brew beer specifically for a few different meetups around the city (Usually less than 50 people).
I'm not looking to be a brewery, but perhaps make 40 liters a month that would never be sold.

Since I never want to sell the beer does this fall under the issues with excise? Do places like brewer groups have the same challenges?
There might be issues with venues and license to serve.
Our brewclub meet on regular premises each month so we have a liquor licence at that venue (essentially a warehouse).
We're covered purely for serving it, not selling. You'll find some sporting/footy clubhouses have these sorts of licenses in place also.

You only need to register for excise if you're profiting from the sale, or distilling spirits. Sounds like you're doing neither, but be aware that people at footy clubs promoting '$3 raffle ticket and free beer' deals have got themselves into strife.

Some smaller brew clubs don't have venues and so meet at people's houses, a different one each month. I don't think in those instances they would have each venue covered by a license, but it's not in any regular spot to cause any issues.

Other instances where people share in large groups have been at 'Brewshare Nights' at local Taphouse which of course has it's own license.

Strictly speaking if you're to be the main provider of alcohol on a regular basis you should get an RSA certificate too (Responsible Service of Alcohol). Every volunteer that worked at the recent Microbrewer's showcase (Fed Square) had to have one and it was provided free by the stand they were helping out (the cost is cheap to get though) - it is a condition on many Liquor Licenses that those serving have it, but depends on the flexibility of the venue manager. I know when we put a beer on at an inner city pub for our club we're not allowed to jump behind the bar no matter how great we are at working a tap :lol:

I'd call up Liquor Licensing explain what you're considering and ask them what the deal is.


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