One in Five Alcoholic Drinks in Greece Could Be Illegal or Tampered With, Industry Group Warns

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The Association of Alcoholic Beverage Companies (ENEAP) in Greece is raising concerns about the high level of illegal and adulterated alcohol in the country. They estimate that 20% of alcoholic beverages consumed in Greece are counterfeit or tampered with, which is double the global average.

This adulterated alcohol can be dangerous, as it may be diluted with water, contain harmful additives, or be disguised in misleading packaging. ENEAP points to high taxes on alcoholic beverages in Greece as a root cause of the problem. Greece has the fourth-highest VAT on alcohol in the European Union, making it more expensive than neighbouring countries.

This high cost is pushing some consumers, particularly in northern Greece, to buy potentially dangerous alcohol across the border. ENEAP warns that this illegal trade hurts legitimate businesses, public health, and government tax revenue.

The issue isn't unique to Greece. The World Health Organization estimates that a quarter of all alcohol consumed globally in 2014 was illegally produced. Counterfeiters are infiltrating the industry, putting consumers at risk from tainted and adulterated spirits.

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