NABCA: What Alcohol Brands Need to Know

NABCA, or National Alcohol Beverage Control Association, works to offer quality data and resources that address different issues in the alcohol industry.

NABCA, or National Alcohol Beverage Control Association, is the main body responsible for representing control state systems, or jurisdictions that control both the sale and distribution of alcohol within their area. The NABCA has headquarters in Washington D.C. and works hard to provide a variety of services to members. 

In addition to providing research based information and analytics on regulatory information, they also serve as liaison to groups that range from local, state, and federal governments and research groups to media and public health associations and any other organizations with interest in alcohol policies. 

What does NABCA do?

The NABCA works to offer quality research and resources that address different issues that affect the alcohol industry. The goal is to provide a forum where public health organizations, alcohol control groups, government entities, and the media can communicate and hopefully collaborate. Together these groups cover operational, policy, and public health topics and help drive important public conversations. 

Ultimately, by providing data and fostering conversations between organizations, NABCA helps guide policies and create more effective regulations regarding alcohol pricing, inventory, and sales. 

Members of NABCA have access to detailed data that helps them better understand what impacts their alcohol sales. They also have access to emerging information regarding how alcohol is regulated and sold along with other scientific research concerning public health. Becoming a NABCA member provides a front row seat to what is happening in the industry.

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NABCA Data   

The NABCA draws its data from a variety of reputable resources and uses it to regularly publish reports that detail sales according to brand, class, type of alcohol, and container size. The reports also break down data based on sales from retailers, control jurisdictions, and on-premise to better understand where sales are coming from. 

Members can also use the NABCA database to generate individual reports according to their own interest. For example, alcohol businesses can use NABCA data to create ad hoc reports to show comparisons and analysis for a certain time period. As you can imagine, access to comprehensive sales information that can be quickly put into insightful reports provides an invaluable research tool that can influence an alcohol brand’s future sales and marketing efforts. 

SAM

Statistics for Alcohol Management (SAM) is another valuable database offered by NABCA that houses information on the account level. SAM contains daily and monthly details concerning state-level warehouse activities that goes back five years. Users can quickly view graphs and other analytical representations for an accurate view of current market and historical trends.

Price Quotation Reporting System (PQRS)

NABCA also offers PQRS, an app that connects suppliers and control states. Suppliers can use the app to manage pricing, maintain contacts, submit quarterly and monthly FOB pricing, and create relevant files and reports using customizable filters.  

Control states can then see all of this information in real-time and quickly approve or deny new pricing, which streamlines a typically tedious process. Currently, Alabama, Maine, Montana, and Idaho use PQRS, and more control states are expected to come on board. 

How to Become a Member of NABCA

Step 1 – Determine Your Category

First, you will want to learn more about the different membership categories and find the type that best fits your organization. Here are some of the main categories:

  • Retailer: anyone that sells alcoholic beverages at the local, state, regional, national, or international level.
  • Wholesaler/broker: any business that distributes alcoholic beverages at the local, state, regional, national, or international level.
  • Supplier/importer/producer: anyone that produces or imports alcoholic beverages at the local, state, regional, national, or international level.
  • Industry association: any association that includes members from the groups mentioned above. 

Step 2 – Fill Out an Application

Once you find the right membership category, you can complete an online application, which will ask for your contact details, which jurisdictions you operate in, and information on the main people in your company who want to interact with the NABCA. 

Step 3 – Pay Your Dues

If you are approved, you will be notified and asked to pay membership dues. Depending on what type of membership you qualify for, annual dues can range from $750 to $1,500. Here is a more detailed breakdown of NABCA membership costs.

  • Retailer: $750 per year
  • Wholesaler/distributor: $750 per state
  • Supplier/producer/importer: $1,500 per year plus fees based on case sales. It is $.015 per D/S 9 liter case, $.005 per W/V 9 liter case, and $.00015 of FOB price per 9 liter case.  
  • State and local industry association: $750 per year
  • National and international industry association: $1,500 per year

NABCA Codes

A Control State Code (CSC) is a six-digit number that is used to identify different brands and sizes of alcoholic beverages that are sold in controlled states. For spirits and fortified wines, the code will always begin with a zero. The code also comes with a three-digit prefix code that identifies its class and is followed by a two-digit code to signify the size. 

The CSC system was designed to help manage and reduce inventory, cut down on order lead times, provide more accurate sales data, and create a more cost effective and efficient warehousing system. 

How to Get NABCA Code

While you don’t have to be a NABCA member to purchase a CSC, non-members do have to pay $72 per code. On the other hand, NABCA members do not have to pay anything additional to access these codes, as they are included in the annual membership cost.

Keep in mind that not every state uses the CSC system. Currently, these are the states that do use it:

  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Maine
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Wyoming

Other control states have their own coding system. These include:

  • Alabama
  • Michigan
  • Maryland’s Montgomery County
  • New Hampshire
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • West Virginia

To purchase a CSC, you can complete the necessary forms and send it to [email protected].

NABCA Conference

The NABCA also holds an annual conference that is invite-only. In 2022, it will be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania from October 23-26. 

For alcohol brands, the NABCA can be a valuable resource, especially when it comes to accessing the latest data and navigating sales and pricing in control states. 

FAQs

What does NABCA stand for? 

National Alcohol Beverage Control Association

What is NABCA? 

It is a national organization representing control states. NABCA works to provide research and regulatory information to help shape policies. 

What is NABCA data? 

There is a variety of data available through NABCA. Members can access the database and generate a wide range of detailed reports to help make informed decisions about pricing, ordering, inventory, sales, marketing, and much more.

What is a NABCA code? 

It is a six-digit number that is part of the Control State Code system and helps users manage inventory, lead times, and sales while also creating a more efficient warehousing system.

How do you get a NABCA code? 

Members and non-members can complete and submit the necessary paperwork. Non-members will have to pay $72 per code.

How do I become a member of NABCA? 

After determining your appropriate member category, you can submit an application and pay the membership dues.

What is NABCA’s membership cost?  

Depending on your membership type, costs range from $750 – $1,500.

When is the NABCA conference? 

The conference will be held May 21-25, 2023, in Kissimmee, Florida.

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