A license is needed to sell beer, wine, and liquor in the state of Florida. The two most popular licenses are: Quota License & SRX/SFS Licenses.
A Quota License literally means the State has a quota for the issuance of the license by a ratio of county residents - 1 for every 7,500 residents. The State uses a lottery system to decide who gets these. Once the quota is set by the state and all of the licenses are issued, no more will be issued until the quota is raised. If you were unable to get a quota license from the state you may also purchase, lease, finance, or transfer a Quota license from an existing license holder in a private transaction. As you obtain and own a Quota license, it is not necessary to own a bar or restaurant. The price of Quota licenses are dictated by supply and demand and are not transferable from the county in which it was initially issued. You may apply for a Quota License every 3rd Monday in August of each year with Department of Professional and Business Regulation. Fees vary from counties over or under 100,000.00 residents.
SRX Licenses, otherwise known as “Restaurant only licenses”, are also called SFS “Special Food Service licenses”. To obtain a SRX/SFS license, the state of Florida requires your business to have at least 2,500 square feet of service area, be equipped to serve meals to 150 patrons at one time, and have at least 51% of revenues derive from food/nonalcoholic beverage sales. If in any case these requirements are not met nor maintained, your business can not qualify and a Quota license would be required instead. SRX/SFS Licenses may not be transferred to a new location. SRX/SFS license fees varies from $624 - $1820 based on the county population and type of beverages you are going to be selling. If you are selling your business and you have an SRX/SFS license, you are permitted to transfer the license to the new owner (as long as they are in compliance with the requirements) but not to a new location.
For additional information on how to apply for any of licenses please check the Division of Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco’s website or click on link for additional information: http://www.myfloridalicense.com/DBPR/abt/index.html
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