In a statement published Wednesday at Italy’s agriculture ministry website, minister Luca Zaia called the recent seizure of 14,000 bottles of sparkling rosé wine labeled “Rosecco” a blow against “agropiracy.”
“The unbridled imagination of the agropirates was about to strike one of the most important players in the Italian peninsula’s wine industry: Prosecco,” said Zaia in the statement. “Playing on the assonance of the names and the color of the label in order to fool the consumer, 14,000 bottles of Rosecco were destined for English dinner tables.”
The seizure was initially reported by Decanter.com on Friday of last week.
The wine was seized last week by the Conegliano (Veneto) office of the Ispettorato centrale per il controllo della qualità dei prodotti agroalimentari (Central Inspectorate for the Monitoring of Food and Farm Products).
According to Italian appellation regulations, Prosecco cannot be made using red grapes and cannot be produced as a rosé wine.
It remains unclear, however, why the ministry took action only now: the wine, produced and bottled by the high-volume sparkling wine producer Trevisiol Spumanti (based in Valdobbiadene, Prosecco’s heartland), has been available in the European market for some time now (notably in Germany).
While the Trevisiol website does not currently list Rosecco as one of its products, it does report that its Charmat-method sparkling rosé brut is made with Chardonnay, Pinot Nero, and Prosecco grapes.