PLCB says Slushies, when done properly, are legal

A private opinion issued by the PLCB, Office of Chief Counsel on August 28, 2018 again confirmed that malt or brewed beverages sold at an increased temperature from a slushy machine by a distributor are legal.

Specifically, a beer distributor asked if the following method of selling slushies was legal:

“The machine refrigerates and stores the product which eventually becomes a slurry of frozen crystals.  The frozen beverage, which would not contain any other substance, would be dispensed into refillable plastic cups before being sealed with custom lids and then sold for off premises consumption.  A label will be attached to the cup indicating the name of the malt beverage, the alcohol content, the date of sale and the [Surgeon General’s] warning… [and] the machines would be located behind a counter in an area only accessible by employees.”

The PLCB indicated this method of selling slushies was legal as a “growler” so long as all the following were true:

  1. The product is sold for off-premises consumption only (i.e., not to be consumed on the Distributor’s premises),
  2. There is no mixing of anything with the malt or brewed beverage (not even ice), and
  3. The Distributor must use a refillable container that can be resealed. In this case, the use of refillable plastic cups sealed with custom lids was permissible.

The Distributor was also advised to check with its local authorities to determine whether there were ordinances in effect pertaining to open and/or resealed containers of alcohol.

Guideance for Refilling Growlers at Beer Distributors