Generally, a dealer means a distributor of products when the product manufacturer and the product distributor are not the same and that a sales contract exists between the manufacturer and the distributor. In this sense, a dealer is distinguished from an agent that performs only sales activities and does not require sales contracts.
In terms of sake, depending on the details of contracts, sake breweries impose on liquor shops (dealers) the proper handling of products such as sales method and product storage, appropriate explanation of products, compliance with minimum sale quantity and maintenance of product price. Sake includes special designation sake that may be deteriorated depending on the storage conditions and other handling conditions. So, breweries enter a contract only with dealers they can entrust their sake to, which eventually creates an especially close relationship between them. There are also networking events and workshops held by breweries and dealers. Sometimes it is difficult to become a dealer, but when approved as a dealer, they are given chances to purchase sake that is only available there.
On the other hand, breweries provide with liquor shops a stable supply of products, adjust the sales territory to avoid competition with other dealers, and present them goods that are used for product appeal such as flyers and banners, in order to ensure the quality of products.