Minnesota Distillers Guild

Minnesota Distillers Guild

The midwestern state of Minnesota is one that’s perhaps known for its natural beauty, particularly when it comes to lakes.

After all, Minnesota is home to 10,000 lakes, which is more lakes than any other state in America!

However, we believe that Minnesota deserves a reputation for its distilling industry too.

Although its distillery industry is relatively young, beginning back in just 2012, it’s gone from strength to strength, with the state now being home to a wide variety of 36 distilleries.

It’s a number that will only grow, and part of that is thanks to the hard work and community of the Minnesota Distillers Guild.

But what is the Minnesota Distillers Guild? And what do they do?

You’ll find all the answers in our handy guide below!

We’ve got everything you need to know about the Minnesota Distillers Guild, including an in-depth breakdown of what it is, what its aims are, and what it offers.

On top of that, we’ve also got information on what Minnesota distilleries are members of the guild, and various details about distillery laws in the state.

Read on!

What Is The Minnesota Distillers Guild?

The Minnesota Distillers Guild is a Non-Profit organization which the various distilleries across the state of Minnesota can join – under certain conditions.

The Guild was specially created with the aim to “protect, promote, and grow” the distillery industry of Minnesota, and it does this in various ways.

However, the distillery industry of Minnesota is a lot younger than you might think.

While other states might have had distilling industries that are decades old, Minnesota is relatively new by comparison, with their industry effectively beginning back in 2012.

In fact, the first distillery to open in Minnesota since the days of Prohibition opened the next year, in 2013.

The Minnesota Distillers Guild was ahead of the game, though, being founded in 2012 just as the state’s distilling industry was just beginning.

Better still, they got right to work, fighting to make life easier for Minnesota’s distilleries and encouraging the industry to grow and grow.

How did they do this? Well, a major early piece of action was all to do with the license fee.

Each distillery in Minnesota would need a license fee in order to open and operate.

However, the license fee was $30,000 at the start, a price that was far too high and would prevent more distilleries and micro distilleries from opening up and making the state’s distilling industry more successful.

Thankfully, the Guild was successful in lowering the license fee, and it paved the way for more distilling opportunities across Minnesota.

What Does The Minnesota Distillers Guild Do?

As we’ve seen, the Minnesota Distillers Guild was very successful early on in campaigning for change regarding the state’s Distillers License.

However, what else do they do? Their key work can be divided into promoting and protecting the distilleries of Minnesota.

Promoting Minnesota’s Distilleries

The Guild helps to promote the state’s distilleries and distilling industry in a few different ways, which in turn helps their industry to grow and become more successful.

For one, the Guild has a stand at the Minnesota State Fair, where they promote all the distilleries that are members of their organization.

To help do this, the Guild also offers a Distillery Passport, which is a scheme that encourages consumers to go and visit each of the distilleries, taking their tours and enjoying their spirits.

Additionally, the Guild raises money at the fair.

On top of this, the Guild’s existence is promotion in itself.

It’s always going to be harder for a business to function alone, without the help of experienced businesses that have been in the same boat.

With the Guild, members can join and immediately have access to a network of dedicated entrepreneurs and distilleries, all of which are under similar circumstances.

Distilleries can help each other out, share crucial advice, and campaign together for change.

Protecting Minnesota’s Distilleries

Speaking of campaigning together for change, a major part of the Minnesota Distillers Guild is geared towards protecting the state’s distilleries.

This chiefly takes the form of campaigning for change against state laws, making things fairer and easier for the distilleries.

For example, remember how the Guild got the Minnesota Distillers License fee lowered?

Another major campaign that the Guild has been uniting against is the Minnesotan law which dictates that only one half bottle of alcohol can be purchased per person per day from a distillery.

This law obviously limits the amount of sales that each distillery can make, and the Guild is still campaigning to change the law and thus increase sales and the industry’s success.

Where Is It Located?

The exact location of Minnesota Distillers Guild isn’t widely shared online, but you can contact them at distill@minnesotadistillersguild.org.


Minnesota Distillers Guild
Minnesota Distillers Guild

Becoming A Member Of The Minnesota Distillers Guild

In order for a distillery to join the Guild, they will need to pay an annual fee of $300. On top of that, they’ll need to hold a Minnesota Distillers License and participate in the Guild’s efforts.

Members Of The Minnesota Distillers Guild

There are 26 members of the Minnesota Distillers Guild, which is an impressive number considering that the entire state has 36 distilleries in total.

Here is a list of all 26 MN Distillers Guild members. 

State Fees

The fees for operating a distillery in Minnesota vary depending on your output.

For example, a fee of $1000 covers up to 20,000 proof gallons, while $2000 covers an annual production of up to 40,000 proof gallons.

Licensing Requirements

Besides a complete application being needed, a distillery will also be inspected prior to a license being issued.

Distillery Restrictions/Laws

As we mentioned earlier, a current law permits a distillery to sell just one half bottle of alcohol per customer per day.

Final Thoughts

The Minnesota Distillers Guild is an organization for Minnesota distilleries to join, and it helps to promote their business and protect them by challenging state laws.

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