Ukraine to stop labelling sparkling wines as ‘champagne’

Ukraine and the European Union are due to sign a free trade agreement later this year, under which Ukrainian wine producers will be obliged to stop calling their sparkling white wines 'champagne'. The agreement is expected to come into force in 2013.

Since the Soviet times, sparkling white wines have been produced in Ukraine under the name 'shampanskoye' ('champagne') in the vineyards of the southern Crimea region. However, Ukrainian winemakers will soon have to choose another name for their white sparkling wine.

Apart from 'shampanskoye', brandies labelled as 'konyak' ('cognac') and red wines labelled as 'madeira' are also in conflict with EU regulations.

The free trade agreement between Ukraine and the European Union is expected to break trade barriers and bring Ukraine closer to EU membership. The agreement is also part of the European Union’s strategy to export its geographical indication system via agreements with non-EU countries.

Maya Kryvoshei, PETOŠEVIC, Kiev

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