The Champagne region is outraged by the new Russian legislation on wine labelling. While Champagne wines retain the exclusive right to use the name "Champagne" in Latin characters on the main label, the law forces them to renounce the term "Shampanskoe" - a translation of the name Champagne in Russian - and present themselves as "sparkling wines" in Cyrillic characters on the back label. Only Russian sparkling wines will now be allowed to use the name 'Shampanskoe'.
According to Maxime Toubart and Jean-Marie Barillère, co-presidents of Comité Champagne, “depriving the Champagne producers of the right to use the name 'Champagne' (in Cyrillic) is scandalous; it is our common heritage and the apple of our eye”.
Comité Champagne deplores the fact that this regulation does not provide Russian consumers with clear and transparent information on the origin and characteristics of wines. It regrets that this new law calls into question more than twenty years of bilateral discussions between France and Russia on the protection of designations of origin. Comité Champagne is currently analysing the details and consequences of this law, of which it had not been informed by the Russian authorities.
The name Champagne is protected in over 120 countries.
Champagne producers are calling on French and European authorities to obtain the modification of this unacceptable law via diplomatic process. Jean-Marie Barillère and Maxime Toubart have asked Champagne companies to stop all shipments to Russia until further notice.
Epernay, 5 July 2021
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