Naturalia Blog

Labelling of Crystalline Must MCRS

Sugars play a leading role in oenology, as they represent the main nourishment for yeasts which, through fermentation, produce alcohol and carbon dioxide, thus effectively transforming musts into wines. According to European regulations, the sugars allowed for oenological practices are not limited to those naturally contained in the must, but also include sucrose obtained from cane or beetroot. This “alien” sugar can be used to enrich wines, except in Italy and other Mediterranean countries, and in sparkling wine production, without geographical distinctions.

When it was issued, Reg. (EU) 1169/2011 («FIC regulation» which governs information on foods transferred through labeling to consumers by requiring compliance with the principles of correctness, transparency and legibility) recognized alcoholic beverages exemption from the obligation to include the list of ingredients and the nutritional declaration on the label.

The fulfillment for wine products was recently finalized through the adoption of Regulation (EU) 2021/2117, which changes Article 119 (mandatory indications) of Regulation (EU) 1308/2013, through Article 1, point 32, letter a), part ii) introducing, for wines produced from 8 December 2023, the labeling obligation relating to the nutritional declarations, the list of ingredients and the shelf life (only for wine products subjected to dealcoholization treatment with an alcohol content less than 10%). A derogation was also granted which allows the nutritional declaration and list of ingredients to be provided electronically (QR code or similar), except for the energy value and substances that may cause allergies or intolerances, which must instead appear on the packaging.

With the publication of Delegated Regulation (EU) 2023/1606, the actual provisions regarding the indication of ingredients in wine products were defined. In particular, as regards sugars, it provides the following:

  • Concentrated grape must, rectified concentrated grape must and sucrose used in enrichment and/or in sweetening must be reported in the ingredient list.
  • The terms ‘concentrated grape must’ and ‘rectified concentrated grape must’ may each be replaced by the indication ‘concentrated grape must’ or they may be grouped together and appear in the list of ingredients only as ‘concentrated grape must’.
  • Sucrose must be indicated separately. All types of sucrose can be designated as ‘sugar’, although this designation is not mandatory
  • The sugar syrup and dosage syrup added to wine products can be reported in the list of ingredients with the specific indications “sugar syrup” and “dosage syrup”, alone or accompanied in brackets by a list of their components referred to in Annex II of Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/934.
  • The list of ingredients and the nutritional declaration, as mandatory elements, also become an integral part of the product description in the accompanying documents, both for bulk wines and bottled wines.

In this new regulatory framework, the use of Naturalia Crystalline Must (MCRS) for the enrichment, the sweetening and the sparkling, therefore offers producers the opportunity to indicate the “concentrated grape must” ingredient on the label, declaring to the consumer the presence of must only and therefore the absence of sucrose sugar, exogenous to the wine production chain.

The use of Crystalline Must (MCRS) thus allows the consumer to make an informed purchasing choice towards superior quality wines 100% from grapes.