Key themes

Importation of spirits


You do not need authorisation to import spirits. However, a few rules have to be followed.


Production of spirits


You need a licence to produce distilled spirits. Contact a commercial distiller for smaller quantities.


Selling and serving spirits

Selling and serving

You need a cantonal permit to sell and serve spirits. A permit from the SAB is necessary for the wholesale trade.


Prevention and protection of young people

Protection of minors

No alcohol to those under 16, no spirits to those under 18. The SAB provides practical tools to facilitate compliance with the age limits.


Advertising rules for spirits


You have to observe the advertising restrictions if you wish to advertise spirits. The SAB offers advice free of charge.



Authorisation to acquire untaxed ethanol for commercial purposes


If you wish to acquire untaxed ethanol for commercial purposes, you need authorisation from the SAB.


Integration Startseite

SAB's integration into the FCA

As part of the revision of the Alcohol Act the SAB will be incorporated into the Federal Customs Administration (FCA). The successor organisation of the SAB, the Alcohol and Tobacco Division (ATD), will be initiated at the start of 2018 and will be headquartered in Délémont.


Privatisation of Alcosuisse

As of 1 January 2017, the former SAB profit centre Alcosuisse was transformed into the company limited by shares alcosuisse ag in the first step towards the liberalisation of the ethanol market and the privatisation of Alcosuisse.



Partial revision of the AlcA

Following in the National Council's footsteps, the Council of States also unanimously  approved the partial revision of the Alcohol Act on 20 September 2016. Entry into force will be gradual.

Spirits, vine and beer: Different rules for different drinks

Spirits, wine and beer

The SAB is responsible for the implementation of the Alcohol Act, which governs issues concerning spirits and ethanol (high-grade alcohol). Fermented alcoholic beverages such as beer, wine, cider and perry are not affected by the Alcohol Act.