K. Christopher (“KC”) Branch of the KC Branch Firm educates industry professionals, attorneys, and students on the risks and responsibilities of entities involved in the food and beverage arena.
KC accepts speaking engagements from universities in the US and Europe, professionals (industry seminars and on‐site employee education) and fellow attorneys. KC works with the sponsoring organization to ensure that his engaging and insightful presentation increases the knowledge base of the audience creating awareness for the pitfalls of doing business in the industry. As an adjunct professor of Wine Law at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and a practitioner to the Industry, KC provides his audiences with an overview of the multiple aspects of food, wine and spirits issues and also targets presentations to particular aspects of this highly regulated industry.
Popular topics include:
- Mandatory responses to counterfeit wine
- The use of GMOs in otherwise organic products
- Grape contract pitfalls and results oriented solutions
- The use of brand names that trespass third party rights
- Risk management through collaboration, communication, insurance and business entities
- The trade practice rules that govern the relationship (or the absence of) between suppliers, distributors, retailers and customers such as sales procedures, social media, contests, and sponsorships
- The ethics of counseling clients on issues of lack of enforcement by administrative bodies, such as the TTB or ABC
KC has practiced law in the State of California for over 20 years. He has received the highest rating, "A-V," from Martindale-Hubbell (a Lawyer Peer Review Rating System which evaluates lawyers for ethical standards and legal ability) and represents entrepreneurs, corporations, LLC's, trusts and partnerships. Much of his practice is devoted to the operational aspects of alcohol beverage law: licensing, negotiating with the Trade and Tobacco Bureau (TTB) and the California Alcohol Control Board (ABC), trade, drafting contracts, forming business entities, and protecting trademarks. He also actively litigates cases involving alcoholic beverages and other topical issues in the California civil/criminal courts as well in administrative forums.
He received his JD from Loyola Law School and obtained a BA from USC in International Economics. He has taught at the Wine and Law Program at the University of Reims, France, Ecole Superieure d'Agriculture d' Angers, France, and the wine programs at Sonoma State, Cal Poly, and Cal State Fresno and Monterey Bay. He regularly speaks on ethics, wine law, and litigation at the International Wine Lawyers Congresses in Europe, the American Association of Wine Economists and participates in the National Alcohol Beverage Licensing Assn. and the State Liquor Administrators Assn as well as to attorneys throughout the United States.