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The Swiss Alcohol Board (SAB) is part of the Finance Department and is headquartered in Berne. It operates independently and bears the status of a public utility with its own budget and account.

The SAB works in close collaboration with other authorities and Swiss institutions. At the federal level, the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) is responsible for prevention by means of information and enlightenment. Close contact is also maintained with the Addiction Suisse in Lausanne. On behalf of the SAB, the Swiss Customs Administration (SCA) levies alcohol tax at the border on imported spirits and other alcoholic products. Its partners in the Federal Administration also include the Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture (FOAG) and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). In addition, the SAB co-operates with industry associations, especially with the Swiss Association for Spirits, the Swiss Distillers Association and the Swiss Fruit Union.

Directorate and Resources

The Resources division reports to the Directorate. It comprises the following organisational units: IT, Human Resources and Central Services, Finances, and Control and Audit. The Communication division reports directly to the Directorate.

Ethanol and Spirits

The Ethanol and Spirits (ES) organisational unit issues licences to the production companies, monitors the manufacture as well as the import and export of spirits and assesses taxes. It also monitors the market separation between untaxed ethanol and taxed drinking spirits as well as the use of ethanol in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and chemical-technological industries.

Law and Market

The Law and Market (LM) organisational unit is in charge of the legal aspects relating to the execution of the Alcohol Law. This includes safeguarding the interests of the SAB and all tasks relating to the rule-making process. The LM prosecutes and judges violations of alcohol law, including breaches of trade and advertising regulations.


The Alcosuisse profit centre is in charge of trade with high-grade alcohol and ethanol, respectively. At the headquarters in Berne, a nine-person team is responsible for the purchase of raw materials and the sale of finished products. Depending on the quality of the ethanol, final date of delivery and the domicile of the customer, customers' orders are forwarded to staff at the facilities in Schachen (LU) and Delémont (JU).

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