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It's no longer "blue wine"—it's an "alcoholic beverage."
There's good news for people who were bewitched by blue wine and bewildered when it was pulled from shelves and shipping crates a little more than a month ago: The Spanish startup that manufactures the wine is shipping it once more, The New York Times reports.
In January, Spanish and European Union regulators forced startup Gïk to remove the words "blue wine" from its labels, arguing the 99-percent-wine product wasn't real wine. To make the required changes—renaming the product an "alcoholic beverage," and identifying each bottle contains one percent grape must—Gïk had to temporary suspend shipping the drink.
Gïk's neon blue beverage gets its distinctive hue from natural pigmentation in grape skin extract, the makers say. But despite its natural origins, blue is not a color approved by the European Union's oenological regulations, meant to framework protect wine producers and consumers against fraud and health safety risks, according to the newspaper.
While the blue beverage is "a laudable corporate initiative ... you have to respect the rules of the game, and they are for everybody," Spanish Wine Federation general director José Luis Benítez told The New York Times. But rather than respect those rules, Gïk is petitioning to change them in the hope it can once again call its product wine.
"None of us really liked normal wine, which comes with too many norms, such as whether you can take it with ice or not," Gïk cofounder Taig Mac Carthy told the newspaper. "So our goal was clearly to offer something to people looking for a wine that was a bit more fun and crazy. The trouble is that we are trying to revolutionize an industry that has worked for centuries without making any change—and they control the rules of the game."
If you want to sign the petition, you can find it here.