BOROUGH council chiefs are warning residents not to drink potentially dangerous bottles of counterfeit vodka.
The council’s environmental health unit says the fake SPAR Imperial Vodka contains methanol, which could cause serious health effects including blindness. No injuries caused by drinking it have been reported to date.
The unit says it hasn’t heard of any of this vodka being sold on the black market locally, but warned residents to keep a careful eye out for the 70cl bottles. The fake drink smells like nail varnish.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) and police are investigating, after the counterfeit drink was found in Northumbria and also in Islington, London in a non-SPAR store.
No counterfeit bottles have been found in actual SPAR stores and there are no concerns associated with authentic bottles of SPAR Imperial Vodka.
SPAR has told the FSA the only legitimate way to buy this brand of vodka is through their own stores, and so it would be suspicious if it was on sale via any other means.
The agency has now issued a food alert for all UK councils to check for counterfeit bottles on sale in their areas and to take action if necessary.
Bottles of the counterfeit samples are identified by the code QI:1445c and a smudged inkjet code reading that looks like 102234 04/08/02.
Residents must report any counterfeit SPAR Imperial Vodka bottles to Cheshire County Council’s Trading Standards on 08454 04 05 06 or email email@example.com