Massachusetts Moonshine Laws

Massachusetts or the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the Forty-fourth largest and the fourteenth most populous state of the United States of America. Interestingly, Massachusetts has been given nine nicknames because of the historical, spatial and religious significance the state has in the country. Agriculture and tourism are two very important sources of economy for the state which take us directly to moonshining. The Massachusetts moonshine laws provide special concessions for farmers who want to brew alcoholic beverages from their farm grown fruits, flowers, herbs, vegetables and cereal grains. Farmers are provided with farmer-distillery, farmer-winery and farmer-distillery permits on request to sell their farm produced beverages, fuel, spirits and essential oils.

1. Is owning a still legal?

Like in all other states of America, moonshine distilling for personal and family use is allowed in Massachusetts, too. So, it is legal to keep a still. The farmers in Massachusetts are given permission in Section 3 Chapter 138 of the general laws of the state legislature for brewing and selling cider on the premises other than their distilleries free of tax if it does not contain more than three per cent of alcohol content by weight at sixty degrees Fahrenheit….but still need a Federal permit.

2. Is it possible to get a “student permit” to distill alcohol as part of a school science assignment?

In each city of the state of Massachusetts, there are three officials assigned by the city council for alcohol and beverage regulation. Although, there are no student permits required to carry out a school project for alcohol distillation, yet school authorities have to consult these officials and attain a permit for the project.

3. What kind of permit do I need to distill ethanol in Massachusetts?

For distilling ethanol in the production of spirituous alcohol, a permit is a must. The license fee for distilling spirituous alcohol is from $6,000 to $10,000 according to Chapter 138 Section 19 of the state laws. There are two steps for obtaining a permit in this regard. First step is the granting of an application for the license by the Local Licensing Authorities and the second step is its approval by the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission. However, distilling ethanol to produce spirit or fuel for personal use is exempt from the law.

4. Is it legal to distill essential oils and water?

According to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, distilling essential oils and water for the purpose of producing alcohol is not allowed without a permit by the state authorities. However, it is legal to distill essential oils and water for personal use. It is also legal to sell essential oils produced by distillation. No taxes are applicable if the essential oils are sold on premises and without labels.

For more information on the topics please visit the website of Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission, Massachusetts.

Finally, we are not lawyers, this info is for your entertainment only, so be sure to consult a crafty moonshine laws lawyer before spending any monies on your own distillation plant!

massachussets“Remember, the distillation of ethyl-alcohols is illegal without a permit per federal moonshine laws and is inherently dangerous because of ethanol’s flammability (never operate a homemade still indoors). For more moonshine laws and other moonshine still permit information, visit:”

Links: – Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, Distilled Spirits – Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission – Licensing information