My competitors’ supplier has an advertisement in the local newspaper which offers instant savings if the consumer buys 3 twelve packs of the brewer’s beer. Is this legal?

Yes. The Commission's current policy on coupons is as follows:

1)    Mail-in coupons or mail-in rebates are permitted.

2)    Offering Instant Rebate Coupons (IRCs) at the licensed premises is prohibited. Distributors and suppliers are permitted to offer IRCs in newspapers, magazines, on the Internet, etc.; however, at no time may an instant rebate coupon be offered on an alcoholic beverage package or within the licensed premises. In the example given in the distributor’s question, the consumer must clip the coupon and physically bring the coupon into the store for the discount. The coupon does not state that the consumer will receive “free” or “complimentary” beer but rather provides the consumer with a quantity discount.

3)    Cross-promotional coupons are coupons which discount a non-alcoholic product in conjunction with the purchase of an alcoholic beverage product (For example, “Purchase a 24-pack of Brand X – Get a free bag of charcoal"). Cross-promotional coupons are permitted provided that the non-alcoholic item discounted is not a retailer specific brand. Unlike Instant Rebate Coupons, cross-promotional coupons may be offered on and off the retailer’s premises.