Gin Legal Regulations:

Gin Legal regulations

I started this page following on from the Gin debate hosted in the Haymans distillery back in September 2018

This is the 4th iteration of this page as discussion has progressed and regulations are updated. This is a page for regulations and not comment – so I will make none – this I will do via other pages/blog posts and channels.

Annexes are added by the EU to the original regulation. I’m not saying that these annexes change anything for Gin, but its worth bearing in mind when you read through the docs that more may have been added even after this page was published

The consolidated regs based on the last annex (29th April 2019) can be found here:

REGULATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL 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 110/2008

PE 75 2018 REV (2019/787)The annexes tell an interesting story in their own right. They show many passionate spirits drink categories from many different countries amending the regulations in order to protect their sector

The most sigtnificant changes are related to Article 9 and also Article 11. Article 9 has largely been removed as it now points to a separate and more detailed regulation on labelling. Article 11 now appears to take into account spirit drinks such as “{insert fruit name here} Gins” as long as they remain above 37.5% Abv and still discernibly taste of juniper. It is also acceptable to use the compound name of “Gin Liqueur”

Summary of regs that affect GIN 

I note from the original text (extracts shown below) that regulations that affect Gin (but also affect other spirits) dictate that:

  1. Juniper-flavoured spirit drink must be a minimum of 30% ABV juniper flavour must be discernible (Annex II -19)
  2. Gin must be a minimum of 37.5% ABV and “the taste is predominantly that of juniper” (so you can take ‘vodka’ and add natural flavourings and call it Gin as long as the predominant flavour is juniper) (Annex II -20)
  3. Distilled Gin must be a minimum of 37.5% and “the taste is predominantly that of juniper” and different to just ‘Gin’ all of the ingredients must have been distilled (can be added separately, but must have been distilled) water may be added to reach the distillers ABV (Annex II -20)
  4. London Gin (or London Dry Gin) differs from Distilled Gin in that not only must the ingredients be distilled it must be distilled together, this means that only water may be added to reach the required distillers ABV (Annex II -21) the liquid must be colourless

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In addition here is a site that lists labelling rules (particularly aimed at ingredients, but not exclusively)

Spirits labelling regs worldwide


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