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Real vodka must be made from cereals or potatoes June 19, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Drinks & Beverages.
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Traditional vodka can only be made from grain or potatoes, the European Parliament decided on Tuesday.

Vodkas made from other ingredients can only use the name if their composition and origin is clearly indicated on the label, according to new spirit labelling rules approved by the parliament.

Parliamentarians from traditional vodka producing countries, such as Finland, Poland or Sweden, had pushed for rules that would have included molasses among the ingredients allowed. Other deputies wanted the notice indicating composition of nontraditional vodkas to cover two-thirds of the label.

But the new compromise rules, approved by a show of hands, were backed by all EU governments except Poland and are likely to be endorsed by EU ministers later this month, officials said. Approval by a qualified majority of the EU’s 27 member states is needed for the new rules to take effect.

The regulations, replacing guidelines from 1989, were needed to ensure the quality of spirit drinks and protect their “geographic origin” indicator that helps sell them and guarantees their exclusivity, the EU said. They also define the labelling of products such as the Czech Republic’s Slivovice, Greece’s Ouzo and Germany’s Rum-Verschnitt, among others.

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