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A Third of Cognac Sold in Russia is Fake, Watchdog Says

Kirill Zykov / Moskva News Agency

One-third of cognac sold in Russia is fake, according to inspections carried out by the Roskachestvo standards watchdog.

A total of 32 out of 47 cognac brands produced by domestic and foreign companies were made out of grapes while the rest were made out of cheaper distilled spirits, Roskachestvo said Wednesday.

“Unfortunately, the nuances of legislation don’t allow us to directly call these goods counterfeit,” the watchdog said in a statement.

The inspection found that five of the tested brands used prohibited artificial flavors while 15 brands used non-grape based alcohol.

Only one Russian brand, annexed Crimea-based Bakhchisaray, was included among brands that Roskachestvo gave the highest rating to, alongside four French brands: Hennessy, Courvoisier, Martell and Remy Martin.

“The more expensive the cognac, the higher the chances that it will have an excellent taste. The cheapest cognacs did not satisfy the tasters,” the watchdog concluded.

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