Allegrini 2024

DOCG mandatory, DOC and IGT upon request, but all bottles of wine can have “the State label”

Minister Lollobrigida’s decree modifies the 2020 decree signed by Bellanova, in the name of traceability. All in the hands of the State Mint
DOC, DOCG, IGT, state label, WINE, News
Examples of the State labels for DOCG, DOC and IGT wines

Traceability and transparency are becoming more and more fundamental on markets for every commodity. And wine is no exception. One of the choice factors on the shelf, of an enormous and fragmented offer like Italian wine, is the system of State labels. These labels are mandatory for DOCG wines, optional for DOC, and now, upon request of the Consortiums, or the Regions, TGI wines. The Italian wine world has been waiting for years (as well as for other things), for legislation that defines and allows the famous “single sustainability certification standard” to be communicated with a unique symbol, as well as a law that allows Italian producers to produce, in Italy, “low and no alcohol" wines that are on a wave many other producing countries are successfully riding. Now, just recently and rather quietly, the Ministry has published a decree that modifies the one from 2020, implementing an aspect that the Consolidated Law on wine has foreseen for quite some time. That is, the traceability of TGI wines, too (which are worth more or less a third of Italian production); however, according to some people, somewhat contradicting its spirit, in this situation.
The Ministry of Agricultural Policies, at the time led by Teresa Bellanova, issued a decree in February 2020, as foreseen by the Consolidated Law and in accordance more or less with the supply chain, had envisaged, among other things, a "system of telematic control and traceability for DOC and TGI packaged wines". It was, intentionally, a streamlined system, focused on digital, and which would help to open up the State Mint's monopoly on the matter, at least for certain categories of wines.
The decree was signed by the Minister of Agriculture, Francesco Lollobrigida, on December 19, 2023, published in the Official Journal on January 20th, and is now operational. However, the decree introduces the label printed by the State Printing and Mint Institute, in place of the so-called alternative system referred to in Article 48, paragraph 8, of Law no. 238/2016, which can be used for wines packaged as TGI, and for DOC wines, subject to the choice of the acknowledged protection Consortium or, in its absence, by the Region.
One modification, among various others (replacing the wording “Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies” with “Ministry of Agriculture, Food Sovereignty and Forestry” is also envisaged, while the old wording will, however, be valid until the labels already printed have been utilized, ed.), which, according to rumors WineNews has gathered, would have been introduced and deemed necessary by the Ministry, after several rather confusing, though marginal, situations occurred in various territories over the past few months. According to some people, even though it is in the name of traceability, there is a risk of triggering a little more confusion, since the labels, at first glance, are not that different from one type to another, for the occasional consumer, who would be inattentive or who does shopping “in a hurry”, as many people do. Therefore, for instance, as in various wine territories where the denominations are anchored to a single varietal, it could easily happen that the consumer finds, on the shelf, a DOCG wine with the mandatory State band, a DOC wine with the optional one, and perhaps also a TGI that reports the variety on the label, and the three types of the quality pyramid, are very similar, at a glance. Furthermore, in the spirit of the Consolidated Wine Act, on the subject, one could also read between the lines the intention to open the market to labels and traceability systems, at least for DOC and TGI (for which, we repeat, they are optional), but will, however, be provided only and exclusively by the State Printing and Mint Institute.

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