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The Wine War

The fight against wine counterfeiting is getting tougher but the producers are not doing enough to win the war


The status of the fight against counterfeiting in the wine sector is not reassuring at all! And it is even worse to know that one of the main victims of it, the producers, did nothing or not enough to face the problem.

antique-wine-companyThe phenomenon has been analyzed in a study named La contrefaçon sur le marché des vins et spiritueux” (The counterfeiting in the wine and spirits market). The Belgian company Selinko, specialized in anti-counterfeiting, examined many of the variables of the problem, which has its epicenter in China, but involves both producer countries, as Italy and France, and the market countries, well developed as England or the US, and growing ones as Russia or China itself.

“The producers reacted with delay to the menace and were completely unprepared to face the rise of Chinese counterfeiters. Moreover, the creation of anti-counterfeiting technologies, which the producers are not used to, created many issues” – says Eric Przyswa, in the conclusions of the report.counterfeit
The study provides an in-depth analysis of the researches in progress, and of the technologies available to face the menace, explaining also that according to a focus study on 250 producers interviewed in 6 wine-producers countries, revealing that only 29% of them is taking any action to defend their products against counterfeiting. Even through some of the best producers in the world, such as the première cru producers in the Bordeaux region, started using some state-of-the-art technologies to defeat the crooks, the real problem is that every producer is working independently, without any cooperation with the others.

wine10f-9-webBesides, it’s extremely difficult to find reliable statistical data on the counterfeiting phenomenon, and the recent studies and researches by the experts in the sector, disclose an even more alarming context.

The International Center for Alcohol Policies estimates that 30% of the alcohol consumed in the world is illegal. In China the situation is even more worrisome: estimations say that between 50-80% of the wine sold in the country can be counterfeited.

The customers, who buy low-quality and dangerous products for higher prices, and of course the economy, pay the cost of it. According to the Institute of Economic Affairs and a research by professor Marco Turchini of the University of Florence, the counterfeiting is stealing from the sector an astonishing 3 billions of US dollars.

The fight is on and the producers need to cooperate among them and educate the consumers to win it!