In March 2021, a winery put a wine on sale with the label "Oral Vaccination” (in German: Schluckimpfung) as a PR campaign. A week ago, the bottles were confiscated: the label was a "health claim".

The Federal Winery Inspectorate, which is part of the Austrian Ministry of Agriculture, seized the entire stock of the wine. The wine was intended to "bring a little smile to people's faces, because it is important to keep a sense of humor, especially in times like these," the winery owner is quoted as saying.

Label "health-related" 

According to the Federal Winery Inspectorate, the seizure was carried out in accordance with Section 19(3) of the Wine Law. "Thus, claims about the reduction of a disease risk (...) can only be used after they have been approved." He added that the name "oral vaccination" was health-related simply because of the wording.

"We understand that the label 'oral vaccination' is appealing as a marketing gimmick for the winemaker. However, there are very clear regulations issued by the EU for the labeling of food and alcoholic beverages, which do not allow any leeway," the Federal Winery Inspectorate informed.

Legal remedy announced 

A total of 1,400 bottles were confiscated. The winery has stated that it would appeal. In the meantime the wine will still be sold, but the word “vaccination” is pasted over. The solution has been accepted by the Federal Winery Inspectorate.