Chinese Official Says Half of Chateau Lafite In China Is Fake

By | May 15, 2014 01:09 PM EDT

Officials inspecting counterfeit wines in China.(Photo : Reuters)

A senior Chinese official confirmed that almost half of all the Chateau Lafite sold in China was discovered to be fakes.

The president of the Chinese Academy of Inspection and Quarantine, Xinshi Li, said earlier this month that the fake bottles of wine discovered shows a very serious problem in China.

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He added that half or more of the wine counterfeit of Chateau Lafite distributed in the country were made from the coast of China rather than in the vineyards of Bordeaux.

The officials in China are working closely with their counterparts in Europe to eliminate the counterfeit wines.

Currently, China is the largest red wine consumer and the biggest importer of Bordeaux.

Wine counterfeiters are a big threat in the market as local markets are restricted and investors who have bought estates in France for wine businesses are affected.

Fake wine producers make use of empty bottles of popular brands. They usually refill these bottles and place new corks.

The method involves watermelon rinds and grape juice and a combination of alcohol. Lafites are a popular choice for counterfeiters because of their price.

Over the years, methods to counterfeit wine have grown to be more intricate. It has evolved from simply putting the label on the face of a wine bottle to blending real Lafite wines in recycled bottles.

The Advanced Track and Trade (ATT) came up with an idea to help the producers of Bordeaux vineyards to alleviate the problem.

The organization has made a several codes, both visible and invisible labels that can be scanned through their smartphones.

Unfortunately, counterfeiters also managed to pirate codes as complex and as specific as the real ones.

In 2013, China registered the official label of Champagne. This would make it illegal for wine that is not made in the region to sell itself as Champagne.

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