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HMRC internal manual

Beer Guidance

HM Revenue & Customs
, see all updates

Introduction: law and regulations

Main Laws

  • The Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act 1979 (ALDA)
  • The Beer Regulations 1993

These laws govern the production, holding and movement of beer.

Purpose and application of the law

There will be occasions when you will be faced with issues that are not precisely covered by these guidelines. In such cases, you, or your line manager, will need to consider whether or not a trader’s request or problem can be accommodated within the law.

We expect that most problems will be resolved locally. However, issues that may affect policy or practices in other parts of the country should be referred to the Alcohol Policy team. Further details can be found in BEER 1040.

Other legislation that applies to brewers and packagers

  • The Customs and Excise Management Act 1979;
  • The Revenue Traders (Accounts and Records) Regulations 1992;
  • The Excise Duties (Drawback) Regulations 1995; and
  • The Excise Goods (Holding, Movement and Duty Point) Regulations 2010.

Council Directive 92/83/EEC

This is the main European Directive dealing with the harmonisation of the structures of excise duty on alcohol and alcoholic beverages. Section 1 of the Directive is concerned with beer.