H.R. 2517, The USPS Shipping Equity Act

Private carriers, such as UPS and FedEx, are already able to ship beer, alcohol and wine direct to consumers. In 2018, private carriers reported a revenue of over $3 billion from delivering for wineries, breweries, and other producers. Due to outdated Prohibition Era regulations, it is currently illegal for the Postal Service ship these products.

Lifting the Prohibition

Realizing the opportunity to increase revenue and expand on demanded services, Representative Jackie Speier (D-CA-14), along with 12 original co-sponsors, introduced the USPS Shipping Equity Act, H.R. 2517.

The USPS Shipping Equity Act H.R. 2517

Under this bipartisan legislation, the prohibition of the Postal Service shipping alcohol would be fully removed, while setting up regulations which would include:

  • Shippers must register with the Department of Treasury, the federal regulator of alcohol;

  • Recipients must be 21 or older, with valid government- issued ID shown at time of delivery; and,

  • Shipments can only go to consumers – deliveries cannot be for resale or commercial.

  • Additionally, the Postal Service must comply with state and local laws in force at the point of delivery.

As the Postal Service looks for innovation and how to diversify provided services, the delivery of wine, beer, and spirits is an obvious solution that would bring in millions of dollars.

Additionally, the Postal Service can reach more customers than its private carrier counterparts.

The Postal Service delivers to every address, regardless of geographic location. With this bill, even those in rural areas will have access to direct-to-consumer shipping of beer and wine, who would otherwise see exorbitant shipping fees or no shipping options at all. Not only does this legislation level the playing field between the Postal Service and private carriers, but it also provides equal access to all customers.

“In 2016, California was America’s top destination for the direct shipment of wine, yet consumers and manufacturers are prohibited from using the U.S. Postal Service to ship or deliver these everyday products. In most states, private carriers such as FedEx and UPS are already delivering alcoholic beverages.”
- Representative Jackie Speier (CA-14)


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