Recent Study Addresses Sulphites in Wines

A recent survey conducted by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) set out to assess how well imported wine manufacturers are complying with standards
November 28, 2012

A recent survey conducted by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) set out to implement an assessment of how well imported wine manufacturers are complying with current standards as set forth by the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code.

The MPI evaluated a grand total of 236 samples of various imported wines, all of them collected from a variety of retail settings. The majority of the wines tested were red varietals (around 47%) and white still varietals (roughly 40%). However, smaller numbers of wines falling into the dessert and sparkling white categories were also evaluated. All 236 samples were found to be in compliance with the current standards in regards to the maximum allowable levels of sulphites as set forth by the Food Standards Code.

The bottles and brands the samples came from were also evaluated for various other levels of adherence to laws and regulations associated with the sale of wines and spirits. They were checked for such necessaries as required health advisory statements and warnings, proper labelling of alcoholic beverages for sale, and requirements addressing legibility and coherence.

Although most samples were still found to be in compliance, a few exceptions were identified. For instance, a handful of labels didn’t include supply details written in English as required by legislation. There were also font violations in regards to some labels, as well as labels that failed to explain how many drinks were in the bottle. A grand total of 22 wine bottle samples either didn’t declare the possible presence of sulphites in the product or else did so in a language other than English.

The manufacturers found to be in violation of the Food Standards Act have been informed of their missteps and formally asked to comply in the future