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Wine fraud?


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I was reading an article in the May issue of Wired magazine, it was not a very big article, but it was talking about how all the top wines in the industry were beginning to put alot of computer technology to use to keep imatations of thier wines from being put on the market. Mico chips in corks, holographic labels, tracking numbers etched in to the glass of the bottles, etc. I was wondering, is "wine fraud" a real issue? If so, how big?

Thanks!

"I eat fat back, because bacon is too lean"

-overheard from a 105 year old man

"The only time to eat diet food is while waiting for the steak to cook" - Julia Child

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It's an extremely big issue. It's becoming clear that the cellars of many collectors of the very grandest wines contain an alarming number of fakes.

Wines drunk by people of normal means are unlikely to be affected, though.

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I was reading an article in the May issue of Wired magazine, it was not a very big article, but it was talking about how all the top wines in the industry were beginning to put alot of computer technology to use to keep imatations of thier wines from being put on the market. Mico chips in corks, holographic labels, tracking numbers etched in to the glass of the bottles, etc. I was wondering, is "wine fraud" a real issue? If so, how big?

Thanks!

While I agree with muichoi regarding wines that are purchased at auctions or from retailers as being aged wines, I think it has little effect on wines that are of current vintage purchased from reputable retailers.

And since I haven't near the money to bid at auctions or buy very old wines, I feel pretty safe.

Best, Jim

www.CowanCellars.com

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A friend and former coworker of mine is a "forensic wine examiner" for Sotheby's, I believe, and spends his time evaluating and appraising wine for auction. He says there's tons of fraud and you'd be surprised at how sophisticated the forgers can get with the labelling, etchings on the bottles, etc. You really have to know what you're looking for, but I guess that's what he's for.

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Not much more to add to the above. The biggest scam potential and market for this sort of thing is with respect to wines being sold at auction. But not just for older vintage wines. Also, for in-demand wines regardless of vintage (think wines highly praised by certain critics).

Does that mean a whlesaler or retailer couldn't fall prey to wine forgeries? Of course not. But most of these frauds are committed against the consumer directly.

We cannot employ the mind to advantage when we are filled with excessive food and drink - Cicero

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