SPAIN: Freixenet, Codorniu truce on "cava wars"
Spain's legendary "cava wars" are over, the country's biggest producers, Freixenet and Codorniu, have announced.
"It's true and official," a Codorniu spokesperson told just-drinks on yesterday (12 July). The spokesperson said both companies had agreed to withdraw several outstanding cross-lawsuits and hand each other undisclosed compensations to end a 10-year legal battle.
Freixenet could not be reached for comment but local press reports widely quoted Freixenet sources confirming the truce.
The cava wars began in 1996 when Codorniu sued Freixenet for failing to comply with legal ageing requirements for some of its Cava. Spain's Cava Council Consejo Regulador del Cava agreed with Codorniu, sanctioning Freixenet. However, Freixenet appealed and Spain's Constitutional Court threw out the case.
Freixenet then accused Codorniu of unlawfully using Pinot Noir wine to make white cava and for copying its Carta Nevada glazed-white bottles, allegations that Codorniu fought to refute.
During their row, the companies' have faced each other in several courts and prompted government officials, who claimed the fight hurt the industry's competitiveness, to get involved.
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