You’ve no doubt already seen the zillions of headlines. The partial federal government shutdown includes the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, which approves most new beer labels and recipes. Of course, brewers are still able to continue to file electronic payments and returns for federal excise taxes and operational reports through pay.gov/paygov/ (ha!), and according to the website:
You will also be able to access TTB’s eGovernment applications, including Permits Online, Formulas Online, and COLAs Online, but submissions will not be reviewed or approved until appropriations are enacted.
Considering the impressive scope of the government shutdown, we consider this a small issue — say, compared to TSA workers not getting paid and calling off work or outright quitting or our national parks getting literally trashed because we as a species are apparently just goddamn monsters. This fact got late night talk show host Stephen Colbert to do a three-minute segment on the label crisis. Enjoy it above. It’s one of the few funny things about this ridiculous situation.