(Albany, NY) – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that Nine Pin Cider Works, a New York craft cider company producing hard cider from Capital District and Hudson Valley apples, has just become the first licensed farm cidery in New York State. In October 2013, Governor Cuomo signed legislation establishing a new license for farm cideries to increase opportunities for this growing agricultural industry. The new legislation went into effect on January 15. Nine Pin Cider Works applied on January 21, and the license was approved by the State Liquor Authority (SLA) just 22 days later.
“The new farm cidery licensing law that I signed last year is already playing a central role in supporting the growth of local businesses across the state,” Governor Cuomo said. “With the distinction of being New York’s first ever licensed farm cidery, Nine Pin Cider Works is a testament to how the State is creating new economic opportunities, growing local industries and creating world-class products.”
Nine Pin Cider Works is operated by the del Peral family in Albany. The company’s products deliver a crisp, refreshing taste using farm fresh fruit including apples grown from seed on the del Peral family farm. In 2013 Alejandro del Peral perfected his own cider blend, winning a gold medal at the Great Lakes International Cider & Perry Competition. His winning, noncommercial cider is called Catskill Thunder.
Under the new law, cideries like Nine Pin are able to operate a tasting room where they are able to sell their product by the pint, enabling them to more immediately reap financial rewards. This fact was a significant draw for the del Peral family as they chose to apply for the new license.
“The cider-making process represents the incredible spirit of where the apples are grown. New York State’s climate gives apple producers an outstanding environment to grow great apples for cider making. It’s an incredible honor to become the state’s first licensed cidery here in Downtown Albany under the new Farm Cideries Law. We applaud Governor Cuomo for his dedication to making New York open to business to hard cider producers such as Nine Pin,” said Alejandro del Peral, cidermaker, Nine Pin Cider Works.
Since 2011, the number of hard cider producers in New York has risen 360 percent, from five to 23 producers.
The law signed by the Governor in October 2013 authorizes the licensing of farm cideries for the manufacture and sale of cider made from crops grown in New York State and excludes licensed farm cideries from the sales tax information return filing requirements. In order to obtain a farm cidery license, the hard cider must be made exclusively from apples and other pome fruits grown in New York State, and no more than 150,000 gallons may be produced annually.
In addition, the limit on the alcohol content for cider has been raised from 7 percent to 8.5 percent, thereby addressing the vagaries of the fermentation process. Most significantly, if a cider producer’s product meets the definition of both hard cider and wine, the law affords the producer the choice of whether the product will be marketed and sold as wine or cider, based on their individual business and marketing needs.
The new farm cideries also have privileges beyond the traditional cidery license, and may offer tastings of, and sell not only cider, but also beer, wine, and spirits made from New York products. In addition, because farm cideries may also sell products such as mustards, sauces, jams, jellies, souvenirs, artwork, crafts and other gift items, these businesses, much like farm wineries, will become destination locations that will promote tourism within their communities.
Jim Allen, President of the New York Apple Association, said, “Farm cideries represent a tremendous growth opportunity for New York’s apple industry and will make our ciders stand out on their own nationwide. This legislation will open the door for a new growing category and provide even more markets for New York State apples. I congratulate Nine Pin Cider Works on being the first of many licensed farm cideries to come.”
State Liquor Authority Chairman Dennis Rosen said, “The new Farm Cidery license is another example of how this administration continues to make it easier for entrepreneurs to launch new manufacturing businesses to meet the high demand for New York produced products.”
Acting State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “New York’s apple industry had one of its best years ever in 2013 and this new license, made possible by Governor Cuomo, will help the industry expand the reach of its world class agricultural products even further. This new license will create even more of a need for New York apples and in turn, will create a new marketplace for New York apple growers.”
To apply for a farm cidery license, please visit: http://www.sla.ny.gov.