Tito’s Vodka faces another ‘Handmade’ lawsuit

6th October, 2014 by Amy Hopkins

Just weeks after facing a lawsuit in California, Tito’s Handmade Vodka has been hit with similar legal action in Florida as the brand is accused of misleading consumers.

Tito's Handmade Vodka is facing another lawsuit alleging the brand has duped consumers into believing it is handcrafted

Tito’s Handmade Vodka is facing another lawsuit alleging the brand has duped consumers into believing it is handcrafted

Consumers Shalinus Pye and Raisha Licht have initiated a class action lawsuit against Fifth Generation, owner of Tito’s Handmade Vodka, and Bert Butler “Tito” Beveridge, accusing the defendants of “false advertising and deceptive trade practices”.

Papers filed to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, in Tallahassee, state that Tito’s Vodka has duped consumers into believe it is handmade, when “in actuality, the vodka is made via a highly-mechanised process, which is devoid of human hands”.

The plaintiffs have challenged both the name of Tito’s Handmade Vodka and its tagline, which states: “Crafted in an old fashioned pot still by America’s original microdistillery.”

“As a consequence of defendants’ unfair and deceptive practices, plaintiffs, and members of the class, have purchased Tito’s vodka under the false impressions that defendants’ product is of a higher quality, is handmade, is crafted in old fashioned pot stills, and is otherwise as advertised on the product’s label,” the lawsuit reads.

Last month, a similar civil lawsuit was launched against Tito’s in California, attempting to force the brand to drop the drop the term “Handmade” from its labels to “more accurately reflect the product’s attributes”.

The plaintiff, real estate agent Gary Hoffman, claimed that since ito’s exceeds sales of more than 15 million bottles a year, it cannot claim to be handmade.

‘Misguided attack’

However Tito Beveridge, ounder and master distiller of Tito’s Handmade Vodka and owner of the brand’s parent company Fifth Generation, said the lawsuit was a “misguided attack”.

“Here at Tito’s Handmade Vodka, we are proud of our process that focuses on the quality of the product and involvement of human beings. We distill at the same distillery in Austin, Texas where I, Tito, started the business in 1995, distilling in batches in pot stills that are customized and hand-built on-site to our proprietary specifications.

“We hand-connect the hoses and pumps as we taste and qualify the next steps with the distillate. We taste our product to ensure head and tail cuts, all of which are done at our distillery in Austin, are made to our exacting standards to deliver the highest quality.”

Beveridge added that the US Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) has approved the brand’s label and that its “small-batch distillation process” differentiates it from other vodka brands.

He also predicted that other spirits brands marketed as “handmade” or “craft” will be targeted by similar lawsuits “in the not-too-distant future”.

Just last week, a lawsuit alleging Templeton Rye whiskey has misled consumers into believing it is distilled in Iowa using a recipe from the Prohibition era has been given the green light to proceed.

One Response to “Tito’s Vodka faces another ‘Handmade’ lawsuit”

  1. honeydijonay says:

    I agree with Tito. This is much ado about nothing. I don’t feel duped in the least. *shrug*

Leave a Reply

If that's interesting, how about these?

Southern Glazer’s hires Redell for Campari brands

US drinks distribution company Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits has appointed more...

Distell and Stock Spirits ink UK distribution deal

Central and Eastern European producer Stock Spirits has expanded its more...

Chance the Rapper stars in 1800 Tequila campaign

Proximo Spirits has unveiled a new campaign for 1800 Tequila that aims to more...

SB Voices: A new age of gastronomic spirits?

As the 'molecular mixology' trend gains traction, are we about to see more...

Ketel One honours golfer Arnold Palmer with bottle

Diageo-owned Ketel One Vodka has launched a special edition bottle to remember more...

Johnnie Walker rolls out Blenders’ Batch in US

Blended Scotch brand Johnnie Walker is to introduce its “experimental” more...

Jack Daniel's rolls out Southern Peach RTD

Jack Daniel’s has partnered with R&B singer K Michelle to introduce a new more...

Turin Vermouth and Caporale host Singapore masterclass

Noted bartender Simone Caporale has led a Turin Vermouth trade masterclass at more...

Buffalo Trace releases four-grain Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Distillery has released a new iteration of its Colonel E.H. more...

Fever-Tree celebrates 'exceptional' FY results

Premium tonic and mixer brand Fever-Tree has hailed an "exceptional year of more...

Sidney Frank rebrands as Mast-Jägermeister US

Sidney Frank Importing Company has changed its name to Mast-Jägermeister US more...

Deep Eddy Vodka hits one million case sales

Heaven Hill Brands-owned Deep Eddy Vodka has exceeded one million annual case more...

Walsh Whiskey launches Irishman cocktail comp

Walsh Whiskey has partnered with UK importer Emporia Brands to launch its first more...

Unmissable exhibitors at IAADFS 2017

For the final IAADFS Duty Free Show of the Americas in its current form, taking more...

Crystal Head Vodka revives 'knock-off' lawsuit

Globefill Inc has returned to court in a trade dress infringement case against more...

Tito's to plug distribution gaps in Asia

The team behind Tito’s Handmade Vodka has said its key aim around the TFWA more...

Baileys makes Almande vegan-friendly

After demand from the vegan community, Diageo has removed beeswax from its more...

Devils River Whiskey debuts with grain focus

President of the Texas Distilled Spirits Council Mike Cameron has launched more...

Baijiu category beats whisky on value

The global baijiu category has overtaken whisky to become the most valuable more...

Rum's renaissance 'a complex picture of growth'

Rum might be the last spirit category to truly go premium, but there’s more...