Absinthe Politics: Swiss IGP Defeated (for now).

For those of you who have followed my blog for the past few years, you may remember my interest in a move by Val-de-Travers absinthe producers to limit the words “absinthe” “fee verte” and “la bleue” to their little region only. To my dismay it passed, yet I haven’t seen much come from it.

Later on, thanks to a wormwood society announcement, it was revealed that the Swiss were pushing their definition as part of trade agreements with Russia and Jamaica.

Turns out these extra agreements to the Russians and Jamaicans may have been due to the fact that the IGP was tied up in court since it passed. As it turn out producers from other countries have legally opposed the IGP and this has recently culminated with a Swiss court ruling that the IGP is bullshit (my paraphrasing of their words), and that the terms are too generic to be applied to just one region with only a few commercial producers.

While this is exceptionally good news for those of us who love absinthe and are also fond of historical accuracy (absinthe was produced internationally back in the day), it’s not over yet. Sources on the ground in Switzerland, who would be hurt by the IGP no matter the interpretation, say the dispute has one appeal left. So the IGP may have another round to go. For now though, the ruling has struck a decisive blow in what is really just a money grab by a few producers.

Here’s to good absinthe for everyone!


3 thoughts on “Absinthe Politics: Swiss IGP Defeated (for now).

  1. Very, very, very good news! 😀

    We can only hope that the association of absinthe producers in Val-de-Travers now (at last) will drop the whole thing and not appeal this ruling to the Swiss supreme court. I guess that the legal system in Switzerland have other and more important things to do.

    What they, the absinthe producers in Val-de-Travers, should do is to propose a legal definition of WHAT absinthe is. Not where it is made.

    1. The funny thing is, Switzerland already has such a legal definition of absinthe. It must be distilled and naturally colored (or uncolored) to be sold as absinthe in the country. It must also include grand wormwood, fennel, and anise.

      The fact that Switzrland is still the only country to define the spirit, makes the motives of the VdT producers even more clear.

      1. Oh, yes. I forgot that Switzerland already has this legal status (or definition) regarding absinthe. But what I really meant is that they should work for an international version.

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