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Before your finely-crafted product can ever be someone’s quiet reward after a long day or before your craft brew can ever take home a Great American Beer Festival® gold medal, you must take certain steps to ensure your business structure facilitates your short and long term goals, is properly licensed and in compliance with a host of federal and North Carolina regulatory requirements, and is positioned for success. This checklist allows you to quickly check the state of your startup.

Choose and Create a Controlling Entity

Have you chosen and created your business form?

Have you chosen a name?

Have you registered your business name?

Structure your Business

Have you decided with whom you are going into business, why, and how you want to divide obligations, investments, and profits?

Secure a Commercial Facility

Do you know where you would like to brew and whether you intend to sell on premises?

You must secure commercial premises before you can apply for a federal permit.

Obtaining a commercial premises involves:

Obtain Trademark Protection

Have you registered your unique trade names, logos and labels with the United States Patent and Trademark Office?

Obtain Necessary Permits to Begin Manufacturing Beer for Commercial Sales

Have you submitted an application to TTB for a federal Brewer’s Notice?

Have you prepared and filed all of the following paperwork with the state?

Business Plan and Funding

Have you drafted a business plan with alternative scenarios and outcomes to identify your funding needs?

Have you decided how to fund the business?

How and Where to Sell Your Beer

Do you plan to sell directly to customers and/or restaurants and bars, or do you plan to enter into a contract with a distributor?

Hire Management Talent

Have you hired all the people who will help you manage and grow your business?

Make it Last

Have you developed your plan to ensure long term growth and success?

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