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Ratafia de Champagne given official status

For the first time in 800 years, Ratafia de Champagne is to be given official status as a product of the region.

Harvesting in ChampagneThe liqueur (also known as Ratafia Champenoise), produced from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Meunier, is to be given Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status by the INAO and joins Marc and Fine already recognised in the region.

Claude Giraud, president of the “Boisson Spiriteuses Champenoises”, said: “Champagne once again demonstrates its capacity to unite. It has been able to transcend the preconceptions that had grown around this regional product to form a virtuous circle – organising, structuring and adding value to the entire sector of AOC-related products.

“This qualitative, defined and rigorously controlled approach, with its direct link to the quality of the AOC Champagne grapes from which it is made, makes Ratafia de Champagne an exceptional regional product unlike any other.”

As well as using approved grape varieties, must limits are set at 2,666 litres per 4,000 kilos of grapes from later extraction cycles after the juice that will make Champagne has been extracted.

The alcohol used to fortify the liqueur must also be grape-based and distilled from juice obtained through these later pressings.

Production of the liqueur is limited to around 15 million bottles (6% of the AOC).

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