Wine Law

530 WINE LAW event, a special edition of Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin, brought especially for the occasion, even with the national flag printed on the bottle, was uncorked” 1 . Although Venezuela has occupied the first positions in alcohol consumption in Latin America 2 , wine consumption is far from the indicators of rum, beer and even whiskey 3 . According to the International Organization of Vine and Wine, in 2016, wine consumption was 0.1 litre per capita 4 . This number has been maintained with few ups and downs, placing Venezuela among the countries that consume the least wine in the world 5 . The boom in the oil industry experienced by the country allowed Venezuelan people to know French, Spanish, Portuguese and Chilean wines 6 . Today, a little bit because of the economic crisis, but fundamentally because of its quality, the Venezuelans have approached their own wines and have found the pleasant surprise of high-quality wines. Venezuela even has an Academy of Sommeliers 7 and has specialised literature to better understand wine 8 . In his Wine Handbook, Miró Popić stated that “Wine is in fashion, more and more people are interested in it. Everywhere people talk, discuss, and give opinions about its consumption, characteristics and properties. Everyone thinks they know something else; everyone wants to learn something else” 9 . The situation that Venezuela is currently going through – aggravated by the pandemic 10 – has led to a complex economic moment that has affected every 1 Viloria, Vladimir, El vaivén del vino en Venezuela, in: Debates IESA , 2015, Vol. XX, No. 1, pp. 35 ff., at p. 36. 2 According to the World Health Organization, in 2014, Venezuela was the third alcohol consuming country in Latin America, with 8.9 litres per capita, in : https://www.elheraldo.co/salud/chile-es-el-pais-de-america- latina-con-mayor-consumo-de-alcohol-capita-152259. In 2018, Venezuela had fallen to the twelfth place with a consumption of 5.6 litres per capita, in : https://www.bbc.com/mundo/noticias-46317255. 3 In 2008, at the time of the highest per capita income in its history, Venezuela had an annual consumption of 3.6 million cases of whiskey, 43,200,000 bottles. Source : https://prodavinci.com/la-nacionalizacion-del- whisky/. 4 Source : http://www.oiv.int/es/statistiques/recherche?year=2016&countryCode=oiv. 5 Source: https://www.vinetur.com/2018052247211/los-paises-con-mayor-consumo-per-capita-de-vino- en-el-mundo.html; a similar number was reported between 1990 and 2007 by the Ministry of Health, in: El alcohol y las políticas públicas en Venezuela: dos estudios , Caracas, 2009, p. 18. 6 The consumption of wine in Venezuela – which does not reach a litre per inhabitant per year – has been dynamic, generous, having grown along with its culture during the last sixty years. For the year 2012, imports were around 1,400,000 nine-litre cases (between white, red, sparkling and liquor) with a value close to fifteen million dollars, a value that triples from the moment the wine is placed in the shelf, invested for their trade by about thirty importers. See: Viloria, El vaivén del vino en Venezuela…, op . cit ., p. 36. 7 Source : https://academiadesommeliers.net/. 8 Viloria, Vladimir, Guía del Vino. Venezuela 2008 , Bogotá, Legis, 2009. Popić, Miró, Manual del vino , Caracas, Miró Popić Editori, 2007. D’Addazio, Leonardo, Vini Vidi Vici , Caracas, Academia de Sommeliers, 2018. 9 Popić, Manual del vino …, op . cit ., prólogo. 10 During the Webinar “Covid 19, New Horizons in the Gastronomy Industry and its environment 2020”, held on 16 May 2020, Guillermo Vargas, an engineer at Bodegas Pomar, stated that although in the field,

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