Britain’s new food policing unit, set up in the wake of last years horsemeat scandal is to focus on the growing trade in fake wine.
One of the signs that Food Standards Agency inspectors will be looking for is the presence of spelling mistakes on the bottle label – one sample seized featured “shardonnay”, and a Sauvignon Blanc was apparently from “Austrlia”.
Noting these silly errors fraudsters are getting better at their grammar but their fakes can give them away with other aspects, such as labels not on straight, poor printing on labels, badly fitting caps or corks and different fill-levels in the bottles. Mid-market wines such as Jacobs Creek and Blossom Hill are commonly targeted.
A 2012 crackdown by Staffordshire trading standards found fake alcohol in 73 of the 400 stores visited, or nearly 20% of them, and seized 1800 bottles.