Alcoholic substances – i.e. substances and products containing more than 1.2 % by volume of ethyl alcohol
Including spirits – i.e. ethyl alcohol and ethyl alcohol in an aqueous solution which contains more than 80 % by volume of ethyl alcohol – and
especially alcoholic beverages – i.e. alcoholic substances for drinking, which contain no more than 80 % by volume of ethyl alcohol – and similarly alcoholic products which are not spirits or alcoholic beverages.
Alcohol Act (Overall reform of the Alcohol Act)
The government shall put before Parliament its proposal regarding the Alcohol Act and certain related acts.
There would be an overall reform of alcohol legislation by combining the main provisions of Government and Ministry of Social Affairs and Health Decrees 1344/1994, 1345/1994, 1346/1994, 680/1996, 243/2000, 1208/2002, 136/1995, 852/1995, 892/1995, 893/1995, 1588/1995, 274/1997 and 1371/2002, which are subsequently repealed.
As a general rule, the production, wholesale, retail and serving of alcoholic substances would be subject to authorisation. The retail sales monopoly for alcoholic beverages would be maintained. Alcoholic beverages containing a maximum of 4.7 % by volume of ethyl alcohol may currently be sold in authorised retail stores. This provision would be widened to allow the retail sale of alcoholic beverages containing up to 5.5 % by volume of ethyl alcohol. The current right to retail wine and sahti containing up to 13 % by volume of ethyl alcohol is also granted to small and independent brewers in order to sell artisan beers containing up to 12 % by volume of alcohol directly to consumers directly from the place of production, in contrast to the retail monopoly. The proposal would ban the cross-border distance selling of alcoholic beverages more closely in accordance with the principle set out in the Court of Justice of the European Union judgment regarding Case C-180/14 Visnapuu. Provisions concerning the marketing of alcoholic beverages, which were revised in 2015, would remain largely unchanged.