According to a survey, imported red wine sells better than domestic brands in China, especially Chateau Lafite and Castel. The real Chateau Lafite only produces 240,000 bottles of wine per year, but the sales volume of Lafite-branded wine in China is 2 million bottles annually ! Obviously, over 90 percent of Chateau Lafite which you can find in China are all fake !
In eastern province of Zhejiang, 420,000 homemade wine labels have been discovered in a small workshop. These are knockoff printing label which intended to be affixed to counterfeit bottles of French wine. The authorities has also found 5,397 bottles of fake wine at local supermarkets which only cost 7 yuan (US$1.10) a bottle to produce, but sold for more than 1,000 yuan (US$158) per bottle to consumer. The supermarket company says their wines are traded through Hong Kong. Many counterfeit companies use Hong Kong addresses as front companies for their illegal business. The wine also advertises itself as French winemaker Castel’s only official product in China. Although the color and smell of the wine is almost identical to the real one, it is actually made of chemical raw materials and contains no real grapes at all.
Fraud has always been a problem in China’s wine industry, but never on such a grand scale. Wine is growing in popularity in China now, it has become the world’s fifth-largest consumer of wine, according to a research study. But more and more fake French wines can be found across the country as the imported wine industry explodes in the market. Chateau Lafite and Castel are among the most expensive brands. One counterfeit manufacture has even combined the company names to sell fake Lafite Castel wine. China’s Ministry of Commerce is already cracking down on the counterfeit wine industry in the country. Indeed, western wine culture is not so mature enough in communist China, Chinese consumer seem to have difficulties to distinguish the real wine.
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