Around 25 percent of all alcohol consumed in Europe is estimated to have been sold on the informal market. This includes alcohol sold on the black market without the payment of taxes, counterfeit alcohol, and home-brewed alcohol.
Source: Marjana Martinic, “Europe’s accidental promotion of black-market alcohol,” EurActiv, May 17, 2013.
Experts in China estimate that up to 70 percent of Chateau Lafite Rothschild Red Wine sold in China are counterfeit bottles.
The wine is considered to be one of the world’s most expensive wine, and is very popular in China. 50,000 bottles are imported in to the country each year.
In a single raid, police found 10,000 fake bottles of wine with the Chateau Lafite label in a deserted house guarded by dogs.
Source: “‘Fine wine’ hoard highlights China’s problem with fakes,” BBC News, November 9, 2012.
In 2011, sales of counterfeit alcohol in Russia makes up between 23 to 37 percent of all alcohol sales in the country, according to federal statistics.
305,000 liters of counterfeit and bootleg alcohol was seized in Russia in 2011, and around 12,000 people died during the year due to consuming fake alcohol.
Fake vodka sales in Russia is estimated to be worth $3.3 Billion.
Source: IANS/RIA Novosti, “30,000 bottles of fake vodka seized in Russia,” New York Daily News, June 27, 2012.
The market in counterfeit goods in Colombia is estimated to be worth between $4 Billion to $5 Billion a year.
Up to 12 million pairs of counterfeit shoes from China enter Colombia each year.
One out of ever two bottles of alcohol sold in the Northern Antioquia province was counterfeit.
Source: Hannah Stone, “Colombia Sees Flood of Pirated Chinese Shoes,” Insight, April 17, 2012.
Bootlegging in Colombia causes an estimated $300 Million in lost tax revenue for the government. Cigarette smuggling also causes $300 Million in lost tax revenue in Colombia.
Source: Elyssa Pachico, “Colombia’s Illegal Booze Trade Causing Headaches,” InSight, October 7. 2011.
Up to 50 percent of wine produced in Croatia is reported to be sold on the black market, leading to 30 million liters of wine being smuggled.
Source: “Some 50 per cent of Croatian wine sold on black market, daily claims,” Croatian Times, January 9, 2012.
An estimated 415,000 liters of beer that was smuggled into Norway from other countries were seized from bootleggers in 2011.
Source: Jenny Sundelin, “Cheap Swedish beer gives Norway a headache,” The Local, January 6, 2012.
A laboratory study at St. Andrews University found that counterfeit Scotch whiskies had less than 40 percent alcohol characteristics of authentic single malt whiskies.
Source: Dean Nelson, “Indians invent laser test to identify fake whisky,” Telegraph, November 2, 2011.
Authorities in the United Kingdom reported sales of bootlegged alcohol increased by 45 percent in 2009-2010. The smuggled alcohol was worth $1.2 Billion (800 Million British Pounds).
Source: Gaelle Walker, “Illicit tobacco sales fall while beer rises,” Grocer, September 29, 2011.
In the French port cities of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer, Custom officers seized 82,000 liters of illegal spirits from bootleggers in August 2011. The number of seized bottles in the one month was equal to three months seizures in 2010. The potential lost tax revenue wold have been about $1.4 Million (1 Million Euros).
The alcohol was being smuggled to the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Source: “France-UK alcohol smuggling surges,” Connextion, August 24, 2011.