Creating and Selling Your Own Beer Kits

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Clover Homebrewery, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. Lake Wylie Brewing Co.

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    Hello, fellow home brewers. I have a question to ask. I have been writing and brewing my own beer recipes for a while and whilst brewing a Vanilla Russian stout, I asked myself: Can you assemble your own beer kits, ( DME or LME, grains, hops, and yeast included) and sell it online. Are there any legalities (or illegalities) to the idea? I would love to know, as it seems like a fun thing to do and make a little money on the side. If there are any flaws in this plan, please, do let me know.
     
  2. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I doubt that you'd run into any problems selling ingredients, though there must be some stipulation about selling some specific ingredients to minors. Not sure how you'd go about competing with the dozens of options already available. Just about every homebrew supply store in the country provides internet access and shipping. And there are pretty well known suppliers whose kits are proven.
    Margins on this sort of thing are pretty thin. Without reasonable volume of sales and purchasing really big quantities of ingredients to keep price down you'd be hard pressed to make anything on it.
    I'd say you should take a long, hard look at the numbers before you went into debt purchasing inventory.
    And if you're actually concerned about the legalities and serious about venturing into any sort of business involving alcohol, consult a lawyer. That's the only way to get actual legal advice that you could count on to keep you out of jail. The legal fees will be your first expense write-off :D :D
    ;)
     
  3. Lake Wylie Brewing Co.

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    Thank you for the reply. Ill take these things into consideration.
     
  4. Hogarthe

    Hogarthe Well-Known Member

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    I don't think there would be any legal issues. You are not selling alcohol, just ingredients. However, I am not a lawyer. I would think the laws applying to selling recipe kits would be the same ones that govern any other internet sales business. Paying the sales taxes would be one law to make sure you follow, you don't want the tax man coming after you in court.
    There are a lot of competitors already established, but with the right marketing you could be successful. And if you are just doing it as a side job and don't need to make much more than you put in, it would be doable.
     
  5. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    As much "fun" as it might be to invest in bags of malt and drums of extract and the infrastructure to store them properly, buy and stock containers for portioning out ingredients, vacuum pack hops which need freezer storage, properly label and pack everything, develop good recipes and instructions, answer questions from customers whose beer didn't come out like they expected based on your information, refund money to disgruntled customers, develop a web site and marketing, etc..., etc..., etc..., I think I'll just stick to buying what I need and brewing beer. :D
     
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  6. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

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    But then again, it definitely won’t work if you don’t try it. There’s plenty of aforementioned reasons not to, or at least consider before doing. But if you are passionate about the idea, take the suggestions as good knowledge and drive on. Heck, I might be your first customer!
     
  7. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    first of all I would forget LME all together its not crucial to any recipe and shelf life isn't good, then if you intend to make any money you'll need to buy by the truckload, My LBS had been making kits for years and to make a buck compared to the big guys you need to plan for storage and keep the costs as low as possible meaning don't buy anything retail, if you cant buy wholesale and by the truckload don't even bother
     
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