Alcoholic beverages have become a major part of our celebrations and get-togethers, with many connoisseurs even setting up home bars with their favourite spirits on display. For them, collecting a bottle of their favourite drink is a passion, as well as a way to try different spirits.
If you too enjoy a tipple every once in a while, you also need to be aware of the counterfeits that often turn up in the market due to the demand-supply ratio. In India, alcohol sales are a large contributor to state taxes and though sales volumes are quite high, brands and the government have quite a task regulating spurious products in the market and require a foolproof protocol to help consumers fight the battle of fake products turning up.
The Dangers of Counterfeit Alcohol
For an average consumer, it can be difficult to find out if the bottle they’ve bought and paid for is in fact the real deal, or a duplicate. This not only causes one to lose money, but can also cause health implications due to the use of low grade alternatives to replace the original spirit. The dangers of consuming such liquor can range from quick intoxicity, acute illness and even alcohol poisoning, as the cheap replacement used will not be properly produced as per standard protocol.
There are High Tech Solutions Out There
It is vital that consumers are protected against such practices and that brands find ways to let consumers verify the authenticity of the products they buy and consume. Earlier, people relied on recognizing holograms and labels or specialized packaging to confirm the authenticity of the alcohol products and while some were sophisticated technology initially, fake labeling and packaging have now become rampant in the market. Additionally, there needs to be focus on representing individual bottles with a way to track products from factory to retailer on an individual basis, which general labels and packaging do not do.
Why QR Codes are the Way Forward
A few brands have started including barcodes on their packaging but this is not much of a tracking solution as bar codes are used on entire batches, at times not changing for years. On the other hand, scannable technology such as a QR code that is linked to an app represents a communication channel that can be incorporated into the packaging of individual bottles, giving a much better solution for this issue. Incorporating such technology into the packaging will give the consumer a sense of genuineness, surety and also improve brand value.
It will also help verify the authenticity of the products and clear one’s doubts, giving them a sense of brand connection thus enhancing brand loyalty. Not just this, digital technology can also help brands to get to know their consumers better, and even let them report if they spot a counterfeit product. This also allows the brands to create all types of consumer engagement and loyalty activities.
Easy to Implement
An app-based solution can be easily incorporated into the current packaging without making any major changes to the bottle or its label. This will help curb the problem at its root, and make it easier to identify duplicates. For consumers too, this will be a sigh of relief, especially when buying an expensive spirit bottle, or gifting a liquor bottle to someone.
Tips to Keep in Mind
In general, to avoid being sold counterfeit alcohol, you can be a bit more cautious and pick brands that have implemented such technologies to check if they are genuine. Always buy spirits from a reputed store or retailer. Bootlegged products can often come from an illegal marketplace where chances of counterfeit products are high, so avoid them. If you notice a difference in smell, taste or texture of your tipple, refrain from drinking it and find out more. Lastly, if you spot a product that’s not genuine, report it to help break the fake bottle cycle. Your vigilance can go a long way in ensuring the party goes on but in a safe manner with only genuine alcohol, cheers!
This article was shared with Prittle Prattle News as a Press Release.