Spirits Regulations 1991

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
CitationSI 1991/2564

1991 No. 2564

CUSTOMS AND EXCISE

The Spirits Regulations 1991

Made 11th November 1991

Laid before Parliament 19th November 1991

Coming into force 1st January 1992

The Commissioners of Customs and Excise, in exercise of the powers conferred on them by section 93 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 19791, sections 2, 3, 13 and 15 of the Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act 19792and all other powers enabling them in that behalf, hereby make the following Regulations:

1 Preliminary

PART I

Preliminary

S-1 Citation, commencement and revocation

Citation, commencement and revocation

1.—(1) These Regulations may be cited as the Spirits Regulations 1991 and shall come into force on 1st January 1992.

(2) The statutory instruments specified in column (1) of Schedule 1 to these Regulations (the references to which are specified in column (2) of that Schedule) are hereby revoked to the extent specified in column (3) of that Schedule.

S-2 Application

Application

2. These Regulations apply to the manufacture of spirits by any process, except where by their nature or context they apply only to the manufacture of spirits by distillation of a fermented liquor.

S-3 Interpretation

Interpretation

3. In these Regulations, unless the context otherwise requires—

“the Act” means the Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act 19793;

“approved” means approved by the Commissioners or by the officer as the case may be;

“approved saccharometer” means a saccharometer of a type specified from time to time for the purpose of these Regulations in a notice published by the Commissioners;

“class of spirits” means one of the classes of spirits specified from time to time for the purpose of these Regulations in a notice published by the Commissioners;

“the Contents by Weight Table”, “the Laboratory Alcohol Table” and “the Practical Alcohol Tables” mean respectively a set of tables of which a copy, signed by the Chairman of the Commissioners and identifying the tables as being ones to which these Regulations relate, has been deposited in the office of the Queen’s Remembrancer at the Royal Courts of Justice;

“distillation period” means the period prescribed by regulation 10 below in respect of each class of spirits;

“distiller” means a person holding a distiller’s licence under section 12 of the Act;

“distiller’s warehouse” has the meaning given by section 4(1) of the Act;

“distillery” means premises where spirits are manufactured, whether by distillation of a fermented liquor or by any other process;

“document” has the same meaning as it has in section 10 of the Finance Act 19854;

“feints” means spirits conveyed into a feints receiver;

“hydrometer” means a hydrometer of which a specimen, bearing a label signed by the Chairman of the Commissioners and identifying the instrument as being one to which these Regulations relate, has been deposited in the office of the Queen’s Remembrancer at the Royal Courts of Justice;

“low wines” means spirits of the first extraction conveyed into a low wines receiver;

“officer” means the proper officer of Customs and Excise;

“plant” means all vessels, utensils, pipes, fittings and other equipment used for the manufacture of spirits, or for the storage or processing of materials for the manufacture of spirits or for the storage of spirits after their manufacture;

“process” includes an operation carried on in order to manufacture spirits, and an operation on spirits after their manufacture;

“records” includes documents, copies of documents and information stored in a computer or produced from a computer;

“still” includes part of a still;

“sugar” includes molasses, saccharine solutions and all similar materials for the production of alcoholic liquors;

“thermometer” means a thermometer of which a specimen, bearing a label signed by the Chairman of the Commissioners and identifying the instrument as being one to which these Regulations relate, has been deposited in the office of the Queen’s Remembrancer at the Royal Courts of Justice;

“warehouse” means a place of security approved by the Commissioners under subsection (1) (whether or not it is also approved under subsection (2)) of section 92 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 19795and also includes a distiller’s warehouse;

“warehouse vat” means a vessel which forms the whole or a part of a distiller’s warehouse;

“wash” means wort in which fermentation has begun;

“wort” means any infusion, solution or mixture intended for fermentation as part of the process of manufacturing spirits.

2 Approval of plant and processes and entry of premises

PART II

Approval of plant and processes and entry of premises

S-4 Approval of plant and processes

Approval of plant and processes

4.—(1) Before a distiller manufactures spirits he shall make written application to the officer for approval of the plant and processes he intends to use.

(2) Any application made under paragraph (1) above shall be accompanied by a description of the processes referred to in it, and a drawing, model or description distinctly showing the course, construction and use of all the plant referred to in it, together with such additional information as the Commissioners may require.

(3) No distiller shall begin to manufacture spirits until he has received the approval of the Commissioners of the plant and processes referred to in his application under paragraph (1) above, and any such approval may be given subject to conditions.

(4) The Commissioners may for reasonable cause at any time vary or add to any conditions imposed on the approval of any plant or process, or withdraw any such approval.

S-5 Entry of premises

Entry of premises

5.—(1) A distiller receiving approval under regulation 4 above shall ensure that the manufacture of spirits does not commence before he has made entry of the premises to be used in the manufacture of spirits.

(2) Save as the Commissioners may otherwise allow, no distiller shall withdraw any entry made under paragraph (1) above while any still, spirit or distillable material remains on the premises so entered.

S-6 Variations to plant or processes

Variations to plant or processes

6.—(1) A distiller receiving approval under regulation 4 above shall ensure that any plant or process so approved is not varied, altered or changed unless the variation, alteration or change is first approved by the Commissioners, and any such approval may be given subject to conditions.

(2) Application for the approval of any variation, alteration or change to any plant or process shall be in such form and manner and shall provide such details, including a written description, drawing or model, as the Commissioners may require.

(3) The Commissioners may for reasonable cause at any time vary or add to any conditions imposed on the approval of any variation, alteration or change of any plant or process, or withdraw any such approval.

S-7 Examination of plant

Examination of plant

7. A distiller shall to the satisfaction of the officer—

(a) place and keep all plant used by him in the manufacture of spirits in a place convenient for examination, and with safe means of access, so that the nature and quantity of the contents can be accurately ascertained;

(b) gauge or calibrate any plant;

(c) draw off the water from the worm tubs, refrigerators and cooling equipment, when required to do so at any time while distillation is not in progress, and leave those vessels empty until the officer completes his examination of them; and

(d) fix and place every pipe used by him, unless used exclusively for the discharge of water or spent wash, so as to be capable of being examined for such parts of its length as the officer may require.

S-8 General provisions as to plant

General provisions as to plant

8. A distiller shall ensure that no plant is constructed or altered in a way which would facilitate the carrying out of any unapproved process, or the interference with any approved process, and that no person tampers or interferes with any plant or process in any way not authorised by or under these Regulations.

3 Conduct of processes

PART III

Conduct of processes

S-9 Special conditions and requirements

Special conditions and requirements

9. Without prejudice to the other provisions of these Regulations, a distiller shall comply with such conditions or requirements as the officer may for reasonable cause impose in relation to any particular operation or process in the manufacture of spirits.

S-10 Distillation periods

Distillation periods

10.—(1) A distiller shall conduct his operations in separate distillation periods for each class of spirits, and shall specify the dates of commencement and termination of those periods in the entry book (or other records approved under regulation 21 below) or as the officer may otherwise allow.

(2) A distiller may conduct his operations so that more than one distillation period is in progress at any one time.

(3) In respect of each batch of wort which he makes, the distiller shall specify to which distillation period it belongs, and a distillation period shall commence at the date when production of the earliest of the wort included in it commences.

(4) Each distillation period shall end when all the wort specified to belong to it has been distilled and the feints and spirits produced therefrom have been conveyed into their receivers and account has been taken of them.

(5) Save as the officer may otherwise allow, a distiller shall conduct his operations so that no distillation period exceeds one month in length.

S-11 Produce of distillation periods

Produce of distillation periods

11.—(1) Save as the Commissioners may otherwise allow, a distiller shall ensure that the produce of any distillation period is not mixed with any other matter until account of that produce has been taken in such manner and to such an extent as the officer may require.

(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) above, before account is taken of the produce of any distillation period it may be...

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