Who is allowed to make wine?
Anyone who has suitable grapes and the necessary oenological expertise as well as the appropriate cellar equipment and who complies with the legal regulations may producewine for private use. In order to produce wine commercially - i.e. with the purpose of making a profit - one must also register an agricultural enterprise with the competent Chamber of Agriculture as well as with the local financial and other administrative authorities. In order to apply for agricultural subsidies, registration with the Office of Agriculture of the competent district administration is required. In addition, the farm must be registered with the Agricultural Employer's Liability Insurance Association and - from a certain cultivated area - with the Agricultural Social Insurance.
The legal basis for viticulture and wine production in Germany is provided by the Wine law and the Wine Ordinance represent the legal basis for viticulture and winemaking in Germany. In addition, the regulations of food law, competition law, consumer protection law, commercial law and tax law apply, as well as corresponding other relevant laws, e.g. hygiene regulations. Anyone who sets up and runs an agricultural business without having any agricultural training - which is not mandatory - must provide evidence of a corresponding expert knowledge examination in order to carry out plant protection measures.
Since these legal regulations as well as the chemical processes involved in winemaking and the cellar-technical procedures are very complex, training as a winemaker or wine technologist (formerly wine cooper) or a degree in viticulture and oenology is strongly recommended. Although both are not formally required to produce wine commercially, they are in fact indispensable.