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Russian state outlaws Jack Daniel’s Honey

Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey will be pulled from shelves in Russia’s Sverdlovsk region after a consumer rights watchdog claimed it contains “hazardous” substances.

Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey has been banned in the Russian region of Sverdlovsk

As reported by the ITAR-TASS new agency, the Rospotrebnadzor service conducted laboratory tests on the brand and discovered a “substance not usually used by whiskey producers”.

However, when investigations were first revealed to be underway last week, a spokesperson for Jack Daniel’s owner Brown-Forman said that the Russia agency has categorised the honey-flavoured spirit as a whiskey, and not as a liqueur.

The group added that since Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey is not registered as a whiskey, it “should not and cannot comply with whiskey specifications”, adding that until recently, the spirit had “complied with Russian specifications for liqueurs/spirit beverages.”

Rospotrebnadzor said that a sample of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey contained the “hazardous” ingredients of sugar and honey, which are not permitted to be used in products registered as whiskies.

Last week, Brown-Forman claimed that any change with regards to compliance issues in Russia are “because the Russian authorities have changed the regulations without informing us and giving us time to comply”.

Shop managers in Sverdlovsk have been instructed to remove all bottles of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey from their shelves by today (22 August).

Brown-Forman has not yet responded to The Spirits Business request for comment with regards to this official ban.

This is part of a spate of outlaws in Russia and follows the country’s proposed ban on imports of Sazerac’s Kentucky Gentleman Bourbon amid health and quality concerns.

Meanwhile, Russia also banned imports of numerous Ukrainian vodka and beer brands which are alleged to breach consumer rights.


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