Australian drinks executive destroys bottles of Grange at airport

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  • Wednesday 2 January 2008

A regional manager for Australian drinks giant Fosters says he was forced to destroy two bottles of Penfolds Grange at Melbourne airport due to security restrictions.

Neil Grant, who is a southern region general manager for Fosters, whose portfolio includes Penfolds, was travelling to the UK with bottles of 1980 and 1982 Grange when he was told the wines would have to be confiscated.

Increased airport security fears mean that no more than 100ml of liquid can be carried onto an aircraft as hand luggage.

Grant said he had forgotten the rule. Security staff conducting checks at Tullmarine airport reportedly told him the bottles, from Grant's personal cellar and worth over £400, would be ‘bloody destroyed’.

‘I had the lady from hell,’ Grant told Australian newspaper The Herald Sun. ‘They were totally inflexible.’

Despite pleading with airport staff that the bottles were ‘works of art’ and should be allowed through regardless, Grant finally decided to smash the bottles.

‘I offered to open it there and then and let everyone have some,’ said Grant. ‘But they said, “No, sir, you can't do that here”.’

Despite stringent security controls prior to boarding, many airports allow bottles purchased in their duty free areas onto aeroplanes.

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