30 mln liters of counterfeit wine sold in Russia every year

Russian counterfeit wine market provides 27 mln to 29 mln liters of wine a year, including 13 mln liters of wine drinks, 9 mln liters of carbonated wine drinks and 6 mln to 8 mln liters of fruit wines, according to Alla Postnova, Kristall Lefortovo Marketing Director, who spoke at the news conference “Problems and prospects of the Russian winemaking industry” at Interfax on June 6.

When asked by Invest Foresight about the estimated volume of the counterfeit wine market in Russia, Alla Postnova said that it is often difficult to identify illegal wines, therefore, all expert evaluations are only provisional. The expert stressed that the majority of counterfeits can be found in the medium and lower-than-medium price segment. Alla Postnova also revealed the technology of counterfeit wine production.

“There are companies in the alcohol market that have been managing the production and sales of adulterated wine for many years. Their business is based on partial excise duty payments. For example, port wine is made of filtered and diluted apple juice and its prime cost is RUR 21 (32 cents) per 1 liter. Adulterated wine producers do not have a solid production base; however, sales volume is huge – due to skipping the important stage of fermentation. The resulting counterfeit product must be qualified as a ‘wine drink,’ with an excise duty of only RUR 87 per 1 liter. Economically, there is no point in this type of production, therefore, the product is offered under other names,” Alla Postnova explained.

She concluded that it is Kabardino-Balkaria, not Crimea or the Krasnodar Territory, that is now becoming the center of winemaking, thanks to producing large volumes of adulterated wines. The expert suggested auditing production facilities by observers from the Federal Service for Alcohol Market Regulation.

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