Hundreds of bottles of fake Jacob's Creek have flooded the market in northeast London.
A Trading Standards officer removes fake bottles
Havering Council are warning retailers to be extra vigilant after officers seized 340 bottles of the counterfeit Australian Chardonnay from 19 retailers across the borough.
Pernod Ricard, owner of Jacob’s Creek, launched an investigation after receiving a growing number of complaints from customers about the quality of the wine they had bought.
Over the past week, the council has been seizing counterfeit bottles from the shelves of drinks retailers and corner shops.
While the contents of the fake Jacob’s Creek is of ‘substandard taste’, the council has stressed the wine poses no health risk if consumed.
William Adams, chief Trading Standards officer at Havering council, said the bottles had been imported from China and were being sold at around the same price as genuine Jacob’s Creek.
He said the only obvious sign of fraud was the missing ‘A’ in the spelling of ‘Australia’ on the lower bottom back label.
Councillor Geoff Starns, in charge of Community Safety in Havering, said the authority had ‘moved very swiftly’ to get rid of the fake product.
He added: ‘We don’t want consumers to be ripped off by buying illicit wine – and at the same time we want to protect jobs in local responsible retailers who suffer as a result of this crime.’
Written by Anna Berrill