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Irish on and off-trade warned to look out for fake Smirnoff bottles

Published:  19 December, 2013

Bar and off-licence owners in Ireland have been urged to check Smirnoff vodka bottles following the seizure of a number of fakes. 

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) said it identified "a small quantity of counterfeit Smirnoff Red Label vodka on the Irish market on sale in the retail and pub sectors". 

Laboratory analysis did not detect harmful ingredients but the alcohol content was 32% rather than Smirnoff's 37.5%. Although the FSAI said there were no "specific food safety hazards", it warned that the source of production was still unknown and said "there may be contaminants in other batches". 

The counterfeit product is labelled 'Produced in Ireland', whereas the genuine product states:  'Produced in the United Kingdom'. However, if people have old product in their cellar that was purchased over 18 months ago, with 'Produced in Ireland' on the label, it will be legitimate. The counterfeit product has an address in Ireland whereas the genuine product has an address in the UK and the FSAI said the quality of the printed labels is "somewhat inferior on the fake bottles compared to the genuine product".

Smirnoff red

The FSAI has asked operators to check stock and report counterfeit bottles to