After a plenary meeting yesterday the Consejo issued a statement approved by a large majority in which it categorically rejects accusations of harassment and discriminatory treatment which certain bodegas in Sanlúcar have accused it of in the press. The statement “deeply regrets the deliberately disobedient attitude towards the regulations and the media misinformation they are emitting with declarations which are not only totally false but which also gravely damage the image of our DO.” The Consejo reiterated “the need for all producers who form a part of our DO to respect the rules as any infractions known to the Consejo will continue to be pursued and prosecuted in fulfilment of its legal function.
A note released at the end of the meeting the Consejo “urges the Junta de Andalucía to urgently exercise its legal powers in defence of the DO and insist on compliance with the law, prosecuting infractors and thus putting an end to this lamentable situation of judicial insecurity.” The BIB conflict took up most of the last plenary of the year and there was no lack of tension resulting from not only the open confrontation of the rebels with their decisions to use a prohibited container and to use it to sell Manzanilla, but also the initiation of prosecutions by the Junta, but whose lack of pronouncement on the roots of the issue is only further stoking things up.
|Argüeso Manzanilla La "E" is only available in bulk|
The Consejo tried yesterday but without success to get some kind of explanation from the Junta vice president of the judicial insecurity caused by the BIB used illegally by Sanlúcar bodegas, who claim to have its support. Evaristo Babé, president of Fedejerez referred at the end of the meeting to the text of the statement and said he had confidence in the Junta’s decision.
At the meeting a professor of applied economics considered expert in such matters had been commissioned to give his opinion which was that use of BIB exclusively in the catering trade cannot be considered “direct consumption” as the rebels interpret the regulations. The rebels say that the catering trade acts as an intermediary between the bodega and the consumer and that is not direct consumption - which would require glass containers. The expert agreed with the Consejo and Fedejerez that direct consumption is the opposite of indirect consumption in which the product might be used in cooking for example.