UK govt in Moscow to fight whisky fraud16th September, 2013 by Andy Young
The UK government’s environment secretary, Owen Paterson, has flown to Moscow to help protect Scotch whisky from counterfeiting.
Paterson plans to use his trip to Moscow to speak to Russian authorities about how they can help to improve the protection of Scotch whisky in the country.
Paterson said: “Scotch whisky exports are a tremendous success story, worth £4.3 billion in around 200 countries worldwide.
“It’s a premium product with a great reputation, which is why it’s important to come down hard on fakes. I am whole-heartedly behind the Scotch Whisky Association’s ongoing work to make sure that anything sold as ‘Scotch Whisky’ is made in Scotland.
“In Moscow, I’m going to speak to Russian authorities about ensuring that people buying Scotch Whisky in Russia get the real thing, as I did with the authorities in China last November.”
With the EU, and a number of other countries, Scotch has a “Geographical Indication”, which helps to protect it from fake products. This means that it is illegal to market a product as Scotch whisky if it has not been made in Scotland.
With exports of £4.3bn last year Scotch was the UK’s most valuable food and drink export.