On Tuesday April 19, 2011, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed Senate Bill No. 5 which authorizes the Liquor Control Commission to issue Catering Permits to certain liquor licensees. This permit will allow licensees to offer new services to their customers. This amendment to the Michigan Liquor Control Code allows public on-premise licensees, as well as off-premise SDM or SDD licensees, that are also licensed by the State as a food service establishment or a retail food establishment under the Food Act of 2000, to secure a Catering Permit from the MLCC.

A Catering Permit will allow the qualified licensee to sell and deliver beer, wine and spirits in their original containers provided the sale is not by the glass or drink and the Catering Permit holder serves the beer, wine and spirits at a private event. A private event is defined as one where no money is charged to attend the event or purchase alcoholic beverages and is not open to the general public - examples include wedding receptions and office parties. Before serving at the private event, the permit holder or its employee must have completed a server training program approved by the Commission and must verify that the person receiving the alcoholic beverages is at least 21 years of age. The delivery person must also have in his or her possession while making the delivery written documentation demonstrating that the alcoholic beverages are being provided to a private event conducted under this Section of the Liquor Act. There is a $70 application fee for the permit and a $100 annual fee.

This new opportunity available to certain Michigan liquor licensees allows them to better serve their customers by being able to provide off site food and beverage catering for private events.