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Sen. Charles Schumer on Wednesday unveiled a plan to allow the sale of hard cider at a fruit farm in Williamson.
Schumer, D-N.Y., is asking the U.S. Alcohol Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau to approve a pending permit application that would allow DeFisher Fruit Farm in Wayne County to open an apple cider production and bottling operation at its 1-year-old Apple Country Spirits distillery.
The DeFisher family, which grows apples, cherries, pears and peaches, opened an apple vodka distillery in late 2012 as an additional crop-based revenue source, and they need this new federal permit approved soon to begin a new hard apple cider production line as planned in early 2014, Schumer’s office said.
Schumer also is pushing his legislation, called the CIDER Act, to allow existing hard apple cider producers to expand their business or for apple and pear growers, like the DeFishers, to add the increasingly popular craft beverage to their product line.
The act looks to reform the definitions for hard apple and pear cider in the Internal Revenue Code that would increase their allowed alcohol by volume from 7 percent to 8.5 percent, encompassing significantly more hard cider products and allowing them to be labeled and taxed like hard cider, rather than wine.
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