On August 17th, the NMA attended Alcohol Beverage Control’s (ABC) 2022 annual industry Stakeholder meeting. The meeting was conducted via Zoom with 112 participants, ranging from law enforcement partners, associations, chambers of commerce, and business leaders.
ABC President Eric Hirata as well as the ABC chiefs on Licensing, Enforcement, and their General Counsel gave presentations discussing the Agency’s top priorities and providing updates on important developments.
Currently, the ABC’s top 3 priorities are the following:
- RBS (Responsible Beverage Service) Training
- Improving and Expanding Online Services; and
- Customer Services
The ABC department heads answered several questions from participants. NMA President Marlon Oram Mansour brought up retailer concerns about the sale of CBD products after the passage of AB 45 in late 2021. Mr. Mansour stressed that retailers have been confused and concerned about what products are allowed, in addition to asking ABC for additional clarification and guidance on the sale of hemp/CBD products.
ABC has emphasized that they are not experts on CBD and hemp products, and it is not an enforcement priority for the ABC. However, they wanted to stress: retailers have the responsibility and obligation to follow all the regulations on these products. Nonetheless, the NMA will continue to engage with the ABC and other agencies to get guidance for retailers.
Overall, the meeting was important for voicing out the concerns of our members. The NMA is proud to be invited to this important event each year to learn more about the industry and to help communicate the concerns NMA members have and face.