Getting Started with Beer Brewers and Distributors

If you operate a brewery and produce beer for sale, you must register for a seller's permit and file sales and use tax returns with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA).

In addition to a seller's permit, you must register for an alcoholic beverage tax account with us if you are required to obtain any of the following licenses issued by the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC). After you apply with ABC, we will notify you of which alcoholic beverage account type you are required to register for with us.

  • Beer Manufacturer (Type 01)—A "beer manufacturer" means any person that has facilities and equipment for the purpose of, and is engaged in, the commercial manufacture of beer.
  • Small Beer Manufacturer (Type 23)—This license is designated for a brewery that produces less than 60,000 barrels per year.
  • Beer and Wine Importer (Types 09 and 10)—These licenses permit the holders to import and export beer and wine and are only issued to persons who hold another type of license which permits the sale of beer and wine for resale.
  • Customs Broker (Type 15)—"Customs broker" means any person who is authorized to act as an agent or broker for a person licensed as an importer or for a person whose place of business is outside California, in regard to the importing of alcoholic beverages into California under United States internal revenue bond or in United States customs bond.
  • Beer and Wine Wholesaler (Type 17)—This license permits incidental sales to other supplier-type licenses. The Type 17 does not have an alcoholic beverage tax account registration requirement. However, it is typically issued in conjunction with a Type 09 (Beer and Wine Importer).
  • Industrial Alcohol Dealer (Type 19)—An industrial alcohol dealer sells alcohol for use in the trades, professions, and industries, but not for beverage use (requires a seller's permit only).
  • Out-of-state Beer Manufacturer Certificate (Type 26)—This certificate authorizes the shipment of beer manufactured outside of California to licensed importers within California.
  • Brewpub-Restaurant (Type 75)—Authorizes the sale of beer, wine and distilled spirits for consumption at a bona fide eating place (restaurant) and a limited amount of brewing of beer.
  • Beer Vendor (Certificate of Compliance)—A Certificate of Compliance authorizes out-of-state vendors to ship beer into California.

For more information about alcoholic beverage licenses, please visit ABC's website.

Interstate Alcoholic Beverage Transporter's Permit

Before transporting shipments of alcoholic beverages into California, you must register with us and apply for an interstate alcoholic beverage transporter's permit if you are a:

  • Common carrier (including trucking company carriers and air carriers, but excluding railroad and steamship companies)
  • Out-of-state beer manufacturer or producer

The permit, once issued, is valid until revoked by us.


Online Registration—Register with us for your seller's permit or add a business location to an existing account.

Sales & Use Tax Returns

Equipment Exemption

Certain equipment purchases and leases by brewers may qualify for a partial exemption from sales and use tax. To see if your purchases qualify, please see our Tax Guide for Manufacturing and Research & Development Equipment Exemption.

Certain purchases of farm equipment and machinery by qualified persons engaged in farming activity may be partially exempt from sales and use tax. To see if your purchases qualify, please see our Tax Guide for Agricultural Industry.

Alcoholic Beverage Tax Returns & Reports

Alcoholic beverage tax account holders are required to file the applicable alcoholic beverage tax returns, supplemental schedules, and reports in addition to their sales and use tax returns. In general, most alcoholic beverage tax returns, schedules, or reports are due on or before the 15th of the month following the period covered by the return, schedule, or report. For example, a return for January is due on or before February 15. However, some returns, schedules, or reports, such as the Vendor's Report of Beer Shipments into California (CDTFA-1056), have different filing requirements. Be sure to follow the return, schedule, or report instructions for filing requirement.

You must file a return, schedule, or report even if you do not owe tax or have no activity for the reporting period. Tax returns filed after the due date are subject to a late penalty regardless of whether any tax is due. The penalty for filing a late alcoholic beverage return is 10 percent of the tax due or $50, whichever is greater.

All alcoholic beverage tax returns must be filed online, and supplemental schedules and reports are eligible to be filed online. We have developed Microsoft Excel templates to help you file your alcoholic beverage supplemental schedules and reports using our online services system. To obtain these Excel templates, please see the Online Filing tab in our Tax Guide for Alcoholic Beverage. You will be able to attach (upload) the completed Excel file when you file your return or report online.

Beer Forms:

Notice of Business Change

Go to and log in with your username and password to update your account information when you sell your business, close your business, or change your mailing address, email address, or telephone number. If you prefer, you may use the links below to obtain the forms to notify us of changes. It is important to notify us so we can ensure you receive timely information, email reminders to electronically file, and other important updates.

You may also contact our Customer Service Center at 1-800-400-7115 (CRS:711) and select the option for Special Taxes and Fees or send a message through our website using our General, Non-Confidential Tax Questions Form.

Sales and Use Tax

Special Tax Accounts