Dr Charles Tannock

Member of the European Parliament for London

That's the spirit, Mr Tannock

The Observer - 19 August 2007

Tory Euro MP Charles Tannock has been tackling the key issues. 'What is vodka?' he asks. 'That was the question facing MEPs recently as some member states in eastern and northern Europe tried to impose stiff restrictions on the use of the word.

'Countries including Poland, Finland and Sweden produce vodka from grain or potatoes. Britain, whose vodka industry is Europe's second largest, produces almost a third of its vodka from sugar beet or molasses.

'An exclusive labelling regime would have meant British vodka having to call itself "white spirit" or some other such name. I can understand products like Stilton or Whitstable oysters being protected from imitators,' he said trying to 'avoid a seriously detrimental effect on our vodka industry'.

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