Hennessy X.X.O Cognac remains suspended

The sale of Hennessy X.X.O Cognac remains blocked as the name has been deemed to be confusing to consumers due to its similarity to the ‘XO’ classification.

Hennessy X.X.O was launched at a pop-up store at Changi Airport in Singapore last August as part of a collaboration between Hennessy and the DFS Group.

The “rich, expressive” liquid is composed “solely of eaux-de-vie selected for their remarkable potential,” according to DFS.

On 7 December, the Regional Directorate of Enterprises, Competition, Consumer Affairs, Labor and Employment of New Aquitaine sent Hennessy an injunction.

The Cognac house was given a month to stop the production and sale of Hennessy X.X.O due to its name, a play on ‘XO’, which will “cause confusion in consumers’ minds”.

Hennessy actually invented the concept of ‘XO’ Cognac back in 1872, but it has since been adopted by the entire region to describe expressions that are aged for six years or more.

However, the classification for XO Cognac is set to change on 1 April this year, with the minimum age for spirit labelled XO rising from six to 10 years old.

Any spirits classified as XO bottled by 31 March that contain spirit of six, seven, eight or nine years will be allowed to be sold until 31 March 2019.

Hennessy has appealed to the administrative court in Poitiers to request that the production and sales ban on Hennessy X.X.O be lifted.

The Cognac house’s lawyers said that there would be “serious economic consequences” for the company if the product is discontinued.

The judge did not consider the plea to be a matter of urgency and the ban currently remains in place until the court makes its final decision.

“In global travel retail, we are always aiming to surprise consumers with remarkable experiences and authentic expressions,” said Donatienne de Fontaines-Guillaume, managing director of global travel retail for Moët Hennessy, when Hennessy X.X.O launched last August.

Brooke Supernaw, DFS Group’s senior vice president for wines and spirits, added: “Hennessy X.X.O epitomises the brand’s commitment to a visionary approach to blending Cognac and we are proud that DFS is the chosen partner to unveil this icon to the next generation.”

2 Responses to “Hennessy X.X.O Cognac remains suspended”

  1. dda says:

    XO is for eaux de vie aged EIGHT years or more, and, from April 1, 2018 (the days after the end of the distillation campaign) it will be TEN years. Not six.

  2. Angeliki Tsioli says:

    Are the specifications of the production of the X.X.O known? How old etc?

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