Spirit drinks: EU reference methods of analysis for ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin

2022-11-08

This act aims at extending the EU reference methods for the analysis of spirit drinks to the analysis of ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin, following the amendment of its definition and requirements in the spirit drinks regulation. At the same time, it aims at repealing the relevant legislation in force, which has become obsolete.

Having regard to the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, Having regard to Regulation (EU) 2019/787 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 on the definition, description, presentation and labelling of spirit drinks, the use of the names of spirit drinks in the presentation and labelling of other foodstuffs, the protection of geographical indications for spirit drinks, the use of ethyl alcohol and distillates of agricultural origin in alcoholic beverages, and repealing Regulation (EC) No 110/20081 , and in particular Article 20, first paragraph, point (d), thereof, Whereas:

(1) The definition and requirements for ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin laid down in Article 5 of Regulation (EU) 2019/787 have been amended by Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2022/13032 among others to bring the maximum level of certain residues in line with the technical parameters currently used by the industry and by most laboratories of analysis.

(2) In that context, it is deemed necessary to amend Commission Regulation (EC) No 2870/20003 to extend the reference methods set out in the Annex thereto to the analysis of ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin.

(3) The alcoholic strength by volume of ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin should be established on the basis of the reference method set out in Chapter I of the Annex to Regulation (EC) No 2870/2000 as that is the established method currently used for the analysis of spirit drinks. For that purpose, it is appropriate to establish that ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin should be considered as a distillate whose alcoholic strength by volume is to be measured directly and not after distillation. Nonetheless, since automatic densimeters provide an erratic number when the injected alcohol is not clear, it is appropriate to provide that the sample should be distilled in that case.

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European Commission, 08-11-22
; https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/better-regulation/have-your-say/initiatives/13240-Spirit-drinks-EU-reference-methods-of-analysis-for-ethyl-alcohol-of-agricultural-origin_en