Following too many instances of misleading communication referring to Organic Farming for non-certified products, or to areas claiming to practice organic wine-making, without having received certification, the Association des Champagnes Biologiques (Organic Champagne Association) states the following:
- A champagne can only claim to be "Organic" if it is AB-certified.
- In Europe, as for all products from organic farming that claim to be such, the European organic logo must appear on the label, as well as the mention "organic wine", the code of the certification body (FR-BIO-XX) and the origin of agricultural raw materials (Agriculture France).
European organic logo
- Only domains producing certified organic grapes and certified organic champagnes are authorised to claim organic farming. Therefore, they must have completed the mandatory steps with a certification body and Agence Bio (Organic Agency).
- The claim of biodynamic wines includes the obligatory certification in organic farming by the operators.
- It is only possible to communicate on a conversion process to organic farming when involved with a certification body and when notified to the Agence Bio (Organic Agency).
- The conversion time for the vine is 36 months before harvest. This is the fourth harvest after the start of the conversion process, which will be AB certified; 2 years of vinification are then imposed by the appellation to finalise a vintage of champagne. A domain starting a conversion in 2019 could market a Champagne Bio (organic champagne) in 2024, at the earliest.
Importers, Stores, wine merchants, restaurants, online sales sites, trade show organisers and journalists must be more vigilant. It is their responsibility to either ask producers to provide them with certification documents or to verify the information on the products or producers themselves on the Agence Bio (Organic Agency) website : http://annuaire.agencebio.org .
For the respect of everyone's work, the credibility and traceability of Organic Agriculture, any failure to comply with these rules can lead to prosecutions by the DGCCRF (the French General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control).