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The End of Winery Reciprocity. New Mexico Passes Direct Shipping Legislation

New Mexico’s Governor signed SB 445, which creates a wine shipping permit for out-of-state wineries, an important move both symbolically and for wineries seeking to serve customers in that state. Now, wineries from all US states can apply for a permit to ship wine to consumers.

New Mexico will be the last state to change from reciprocity to permit status for winery shipping since it was the last state that had a reciprocity law still on the books for wineries. The move from reciprocity laws to state permit laws was instigated by the 2005 Granholm v. Heald Supreme Court decision. That landmark ruling not only held discriminatory shipping laws to be unconstitutional but also noted a constitutional problem with reciprocity agreements when Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the majority, proclaimed that “States should not be compelled to negotiate with each other regarding favored or disfavored status for their own citizens.”

It should be noted that in changing its wine shipping laws, New Mexico has left in place “reciprocity” arrangements for retailer-to-consumer shipping.

The New Mexico Wine Shipping Permit goes into effect on July 1, 2011. It’s provisions include:

Cost of Permit: $50 per year
Bond requirements: None
Limits on Amount of Wine Shipped: 2 cases per individual per year month
Taxes: Sales and Gross Receipts tax must be paid by the direct wine shipping permit holder
Reporting: Due annually


  1. The provisions in the bill that was signed are different than reported above. The limit is 2 case per individual per month, with monthly reporting/payment of gross receipts tax (sales tax) and excise tax.

  2. Hi Ron, you are correct – the limit is 2 cases per individual per month, not per year. Thank you for the correction.


  1. Wine Sales and Distribution 2012 – A Look Forward | ShipCompliant: Wine Shipping Blog - [...] their borders to the direct shipment of wine from other states continued steadily. Maryland and New Mexico both opened …

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