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YetiChocolates

Legal issues with alcohol in ganaches

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1 hour ago, Tri2Cook said:


That's exactly what I would have thought as well. If you're eating the chocolate in it's entirety, then isn't the entirety of the chocolate the total volume? I can't imagine anybody is digging one layer out at a time and eating them individually. 

 

Agreed, and you would have to buy a very large amount and scoop out the ganache to eat it to even attempt at getting drunk on the ganache.  A minor would have an easier time stealing booze from their parents.

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2 hours ago, YetiChocolates said:

 

So that is where it gets tricky IMO because according to the enforcement agent it doesn’t matter because it’s abv, but I think it should matter because as you’re eating the whole chocolate it gets diluted by the other components of the chocolate itself...

 

I’m chatting with a lawyer next week who’s pretty dialed on the LCB laws and will be contacting someone on the LCB that isn’t the enforcement agent so hopefully I’ll be able to find a reasonable solution to this problem. 

 

That's ridiculous and I bet you're lawyer will take care of it.   It should be the % of alcohol itself in the entire recipe.  Good luck and I'll keep an eye out for updates.

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I sent this query to my brother who is not currently practicing as a lawyer but who has passed the bar in 3 states, and he said go by what is current according to WA legislature, the 1% specified here.  https://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=66.12.160

Don't worry about what was repealed, that no longer exists, and the federal 0.5% only applies in states that have not made their own rules.

 

I agree that it sounds like BS that he wants to examine every component separately, and no layer can have more than 1%.  The product is a finished piece, and sounds like yours are normal small bonbon size.   Is he some kind of fanatical teetotaler?

 

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7 hours ago, pastrygirl said:

Is he some kind of fanatical teetotaler?


Sounds more like some wiener with a power complex who finally managed to get himself into a position with some degree of authority and is doing his best to flex it at every opportunity. 

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On 2/22/2019 at 11:49 AM, YetiChocolates said:

I’m chatting with a lawyer next week who’s pretty dialed on the LCB laws and will be contacting someone on the LCB that isn’t the enforcement agent so hopefully I’ll be able to find a reasonable solution to this problem. 

 

 

Just wanted to post a little update to this saga.  I did speak with a lawyer, and in his mind, since the LCB hasn't contacted me yet regarding this, it's in my best interest to fly under the radar and not "poke the bear" as he liked to say.  He does feel I have a good case and I'm doing the right thing (pulling all chocolates with alcohol, getting chocolates tested, etc), but until the test results come back, we sit and wait...

 

Well the analytical company called me and said that they would need to send the chocolates off to get tested rather than being able to do it in house, and that it would cost $250 - per sample! Now I'm sure I could find someone else that might be able to do this, but that really knocked the wind out of my sails and had me asking whether this fight is really worth all the money I might be spending (as the lawyer is $200/hour, luckily the first call was free).

 

So for now I think it's Washington State - 1 Yeti Chocolates - 0. 

 

I just bought some trablit to sub for Kahlua in my Smith n' Wesson and will omit all of my chocolates containing alcohol (or omit the alcohol from the formulas) for the time being.

 

I also did receive an email from the LCB enforcement agent yesterday stating that the permit he wants me to acquire is based on https://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=66.12.170 , which is essentially a permit to even be able to purchase alcohol to use in confections.  The fee is $10. @pastrygirl have you heard of this permit before and do you have it? For now since the fee is so nominal I'll just get it so I can get him off my back, as I probably will reintroduce alcohol back into my chocolates at some point, and just add it during the "cooking process" so they feel better that it's burned off.  And I"m sure in his mind I will need this permit to even acquire vanilla extract, even though you can purchase this without being 21 🙄

 

If nothing else I guess I've learned a lot about how shitty my math skills (which I already knew but were affirmed) are when trying to calculate how much alcohol is in a piece of chocolate, and the evaporation rate and temperature for alcohol when cooked.  At least I feel I will be able to answer this question much more thoroughly and "politically" in the future.

 

 

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I have a vague recollection from early in my career of needing some permit or license number for the very occasional liquor store runs.  It was a coffee shop, so we didn't have a liquor license, any spirits would have been used in layer cakes.  I worked in restaurants with full bars for so long it fell of my radar, and it's really not something that anybody talks about - the county health dept doesn't care, and the FDA food labeling guide doesn't mention alcohol.  And yes, it seems ridiculous when I have vanilla extract at 35% alcohol and lemon extract that's much higher!  I don't have the license now, but sounds like I should, especially if I can save on the sales tax!.  I tried to buy a bottle of something at Restaurant Depot once and they wouldn't let me because I didn't have a license, being able to buy liquor at wholesale prices would be nice, i might use more ;)

 

Sounds like I should add a sticker saying 'contains less than 1% ABV' to my one product where it applies, or if I make boozy bonbons for Mothers' Day.  I have all my food allergens labeled but didn't know I needed to call out alcohol.  I have had a couple of people ask about alcohol at events, but far fewer than the vegans or any food allergy.

 

I definitely agree with not poking the bear, but I think the bear is poking you. The license to produce goods with more than 1% alcohol might actually be worth it for you in the long term if you have a couple of good winery customers or want to go after all the craft distillers in the state and produce their custom whisky bonbons.  You could corner the market - now we know why nobody else is doing it!  

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On 2/28/2019 at 8:32 AM, pastrygirl said:

I have all my food allergens labeled but didn't know I needed to call out alcohol.  I have had a couple of people ask about alcohol at events, but far fewer than the vegans or any food allergy.

 

I definitely agree with not poking the bear, but I think the bear is poking you. The license to produce goods with more than 1% alcohol might actually be worth it for you in the long term if you have a couple of good winery customers or want to go after all the craft distillers in the state and produce their custom whisky bonbons.  You could corner the market - now we know why nobody else is doing it!  

 

Yeah, labeling alcohol was not on my radar either and not something my inspector mentioned to me either, though he thoroughly went through my labels...

 

I would bet 90% of WA state chocolatiers don’t have the permit to obtain alcohol or know of its existence. 

 

As for getting the manufacturing permit, we’ll see, but getting a that corner of the market is definitely an intriguing idea...specialty wine chocolates in Chelan valley alone may be worth it!

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