California Court of Appeal Rejects ABC Interpretation of “Single Beverage Condition”

By Daniel Hayes

The California Court of Appeal recently rejected the ABC’s reading of a “single beverage condition” it used in a license issued to a Sacramento gas station.  (Dept. of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) v. ABC (Case No. C085199)).  The condition read: “Beer and/or malt beverages shall be sold in original factory packages of a six-pack or greater, except malt based coolers.  At no time, shall a single unit be sold individually, or in conjunction with another brand/size container of beer and/or malt beverage to constitute a six-pack or larger quantity.”  The ABC took the position this required any and all beer to be sold as six packs or greater.  The Court of Appeal disagreed, holding that the condition did not prohibit the sale of single beers that were not “originally packaged as six packs.”  Look for the ABC to be more explicit in its conditional licenses in the future.

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