Reports in Russia claiming that Pernod Ricard has had its local wholesale licence suspended have been proved false.

Kommersant International said today (9 August) that the licence had been suspended following a probe by the Moscow branch of the Federal Service on Consumer Rights Supervision (FSCRS) late last month.

The report claimed that the licence was withdrawn due to a "breach of sanitary laws".

Kommersant also suggested that Pernod's prominence in various spirits sectors in Russia had "prompted the bureaucrats to benefit from the import alcohol crisis and attempt to squeeze even such majors as Pernod".

When contacted by just-drinks today, however, Pernod said that the report was not true as a statement issued by the FSCRS had been released in error. "Everything is fine with our licence in Russia," a spokesperson for Pernod said.

The Russian spirits industry has been thrown into chaos of late, with a new system of tax stamps leading to empty shelves in stores. The Russian authorities struggled to release enough new stamps in time for a deadline it had set for old stamps to be ruled invalid.