The rules of the contest are available in English (for information and convenience) but in case of conflict between the French version and the English version, the French version is the reference.
The rules of the contest are downloadable:
Article 1: The Organizer
The Amelovin Company whose headquarters is located at 5 rue Pierre de Coubertin, 31520 Ramonville-Saint Agne, France, No Siret: 814 786 299 00010, hereafter called the “Organizer”, is organizing the competition “Concours International Wine in Box”, hereafter called the “ Concours”.
The totality of operations (including administrative, technical, promotional…) of the Concours will be carried out by the Organizer.
Within the framework of the Concours, the Organizer’s home address is 5 rue du Pierre de Coubertin, 31520 Ramonville-Saint Agne, France.
Article 2: Products Concerned
The concours is open to:
- All French still wines (in particular the VDL) produced in AOP (Protected Designation of Origin) and Protected Geographical Indication (having been the object of a declaration as covered in articles D.644-5 and D.646-6 of rural and maritime fishing legislation before the registration date), packed in Bag-in-box © or wine-in-box.
- Any French wines that do not have a protected geographical indication are presented with an indication of the vintage and/or the grape variety which has been certified in accord with the rules of Article R.665-24 of the rural and fishing legislation, packed in bag-in-box©.
For international wines:
- All wines that fulfill the definition of the international code of oenological practice of the International Organization of Vine and Wine. All products must mention their country of origin where the grapes were harvested and turned into wine and be packed in bag-in-box©.
Article 3: Conditions of Presentation
To compete, wines must obligatorily be:
- ready to sell,
- meeting their specifications,
- the labelling must be in keeping with:
- current French regulations for French wine,
- European Union regulations for wines coming from member States of the European Union and other countries.
Projects for packaging design are accepted in registration applications. However, samples will be accepted only in their final and official design.
Article 4: Participants or Contestants
The only people allowed to present their wine are:
- wine producers,
- wine producing cooperatives,
- groups of cooperatives,
- groups of producers,
- distribution agents mandated by wine producers, wine-producing cooperatives, or groups of cooperatives that provide the packaging for the marketed wines.
Article 5: Obligation
Every participant in the Concours promises to respect all the articles of the present regulations and to supply all the information and documents mentioned on the registration form.
Article 6: Participant’s fees
Registration in the Concours is dependent on fixed and unique fees, set every year by the Organizer. These fees must be paid at the time of registration for each product presented.
The fee amount is mentioned on the registration form and must be paid by bank transfer or cheque to the order of Amelovin, included with the registration form.
Under no conditions will payment be reimbursed for whatever reason of cancellation.
Article 7: Terms and conditions of registration
A deadline for registration forms, as well as a deadline for sending samples is set by the Organizer, and is mentioned on the registration form and the technical form.
For each product presented, a complete registration form must reach the Organizer before the set deadline.
The registration file must contain:
- the registration form,
- the technical form,
- the analysis report identifying the sample, dated less than six (6) months before the registration deadline,
- for French wines:
- the declaration of the claim for AOP and IGP,
- or, the request for certification for wines without IG presented showing the vintage and/or the grape variety.
- a cheque for registration fees or a receipt for a bank transfer.
The analysis will cover the following parameters:
- the alcohol measured by volume, attained and potential,
- total sulphur dioxide (expressed as mg/l),
- sugars (glucose + fructose) (expressed as g/l),
- total acidity (expressed as meq/l),
- total volatile acidity (expressed as meq/l).
The laboratory must be authorized by COFRAC for French wines and the national authorizing organization of the country in which the wine is produced for foreign wines. The analysis form must carry the logo of the certifying organization (COFRAC for France) and mention the reference code of the method used for each of the required parameters.
Each registration form corresponds to a single product presented by a single producer, identified by a reference number during the handling of the files. The analyses must correspond to the obligatory information listed on the packaging of the presented sample, as well as to current regulations.
Registration is effective upon reception of the complete file (the address and deadline for sending the file are written on the registration form).
If the file is rejected, there will be no reimbursement of the registration fees.
Article 8: Samples – Homogeneous lots – Minimum volume
Four samples of each wine are needed:
- Three samples are to be sent to the Organizer (one for tasting, one backup for tasting in case of problems with the first and one for regulatory preservation).
- One sample must be kept by the candidate (regulatory preservation).
Wine samples will be presented in containers of three (3) liters or five (5) liters. Samples presented in bottles, regardless of how much they contain, cannot participate.
Samples must come from packaging of a single, homogeneous packaged or partially unpackaged lot of a product clearly identified by a lot number. A homogeneous lot is the volume of wine from the same vinification for a given year or, in the case of a blend of different wines, the volume of wine from the same blend with a single geographic denomination for a given year. This lot must be available and held for consumption.
In order to compete, each participant must have a homogeneous lot of a minimum volume of 1000 liters, physically present in their wine storehouses during the Concours.
The address to which the samples are to be sent is mentioned on the registration form.
For each product presented, the duration of conservation of the two control samples (regulatory preservation by the Organizer and the candidate) must be one year (starting from the date of the Concours).
The samples received remain the property of the Organizer of the Concours. They will not be returned to the candidates, even in the case of the candidate renouncing his participation in the Concours, or the candidate’s elimination.
Article 9: Anonymity of the wines
The registered wines are classified by designation: AOC/AOP, IGP, VDL, by color, by grape variety and by vintage. The sample is placed in opaque packaging. No identifying marks should appear on the packaging. Each sample has a label listing:
- number of the participating wine,
- wine variety or varieties,
- if necessary, the sugar content (glucose and fructose).
Article 10: Organization of tastings and distinctions
The wines will be tasted according to their category (designation, type, variety, vintage, color), the samples having been placed in identical packaging to guarantee their anonymity.
Appreciation of the wines will be descriptive and will contain comments about:
- visual aspect,
- olfactory sensation,
- gustatory impression,
- harmony of the whole.
The best wines in each category may receive the distinction “BEST WINE IN BOX”. No distinction can be assigned for a given category if there are fewer than three distinct competitors.
Article 11: Designation and competence of jury members
The juries for the Concours will be made up by the Organizer.
Two-thirds of the jury members will be chosen from lists mainly composed of confirmed tasters, members of the wine-producing and wine-making sector.
- wine merchants,
- other professionals (restaurant owners, journalists).
The final third of the jury will be made up of consumers.
Each jury consists of at least three people. The president of the jury is obligatorily an oenologist. One student oenologist can be included in the jury on the condition that the student is in the final year of obtaining his or her diploma. The Organizer will take appropriate measures so that a candidate-jury member will not judge his or her own wines.
The president of the jury will supervise the blind tasting.
Article 12: Tasting proceedings and role of the president
The Organizer makes sure that the tasting temperature is correct.
The anonymous wines are presented open.
During the competition, the president of the jury serves the wines.
For each jury table, the jury president fills out an attendance sheet, which must be filled out and signed by all the jury members with their names and occupations.
The Organizer will receive a declaration from the jury members mentioning their direct or indirect connections with the wines presented at the Concours.
Each table will present a form listing the tested wines, with:
- jury number,
- anonymity number,
- variety or varieties,
- if necessary, the presence of sugars or maturation in wooden casks.
An individual tasting form allows each jury member to grade and classify each sample individually on its visual, olfactory, gustatory and harmonious aspects.
The jury president will gather members’ opinions and produce a summary.
At the end of the tasting, a report on the tasting is produced, signed by each jury member and given by the jury president to the Organizer of the Concours. For each award-winning wine, this document will specify
- the distinction attributed,
- anonymity number,
- eventual comments.
Article 13: Awards
The awards, limited to 30% per category and for the entire Concours, will be awarded according to the juries’ appreciation of wines that reached a level of high expression deserving of these awards.
No award can be given if fewer than three distinct competitors are in the same category.
The Organizer will inform each candidate of the results by mail.
Results of the Concours will be advertised as widely as possible through the greatest number of means: internet press, television, radio, specialized journals, gourmet press, …
The Organizer will present each winner with a document specifying:
- the name of the Concours,
- type of awarded distinction,
- category in which the wine competed,
- the wine’s identity (sales designation, color, variety and vintage),
- declared volume,
- name and address of the possessor of the winning wine.
Stickers with the awarded distinction can be applied to the Wine-in-box and will be available from the Organizer for the award-winning wines depending on the volume of wine declared on the registration form.
Any other mention of the award won shall be necessarily approved by the Organizer before being printed on the wine packaging.
The Organizer retains the exclusive right to control the commercial use of the award. Unauthorized use, reproduction of the logo and its distinction are strictly forbidden.
Any breach will be the cause of proceedings against the transgressor and his/her printer.
The winners authorize the Organizer to publish their name, as well as the information specified on the technical form, without leading to other rights.
Correct proceeding of the Concours will be placed under the control of the General Commission of the Concours, consisting of a commissioner inside the organization (cf article 15) with the participation of supervising organizations (INAO, France Agrimer).
A complete prize list will be published at each edition of the Concours.
The winning candidate and the Organizer must keep the winning samples as stipulated in Article 8 of the present regulations. The information files (registration forms, technical forms and analyses) must be kept for five (5) years (from the date of the Concours).
Article 14: Declarations
The Organizer of the Concours notifies DIRECCTE MIDI-PYRÉNÉES (Pôle Concurrence, Consommation, Métrologie, et Répression des Fraudes et métrologie, 5 Esplanade Compans Caffarelli, BP 98016, 31080 TOULOUSE Cedex 6) two months before the Concours takes place, specifying the location, the date retained, and including the present document.
At the latest, two months after the Concours, the Organizer transmits to DIRECCTE Midi-Pyrénées a report signed by the person in charge of control confirming that the Concours took place according to regulations and included in particular:
- the number of wines presented,
- the number of wines retained globally and by category,
- the number of award-winning wines, globally and by category,
- the list of award-winning wines,
- for each award-winning wine, elements allowing this wine and its possessor to be identified,
- the percentage of award-winning wines with respect to the number of wines presented,
- the number of distinctions awarded.
Article 15: Controls
The organizer puts into place a package of internal controls to verify compliance with regulations of the Concours.
This will be done by an independent commissioner named by the Organizer and who does not participate in the Concours’ proceedings. He is mandated to check:
- compliance with regulations,
- sample preparation,
- organization and testing procedures and judging,
- control, utilization and publication of results.
In case of doubt about a product’s origin or authenticity, or in the case of presentation of samples not in line with standard regulations or the regulations of the Concours, the wines in question will be eliminated from the competition.
The Organizer may proceed with controls of compliance between the registration form and the award-winning sample. The Organizer is authorized to verify the declaration of claims of award-winning wines.
The Organizer has the right to proceed with analysis controls on the award-winning samples and promises systematic controls of the top 5% of the award-winning wines.
Article 16: Disputes
Any practical difficulties of application or interpretation of the present regulations will be decided without appeal by the Organizer. If necessary, the Organizer reserves the right to form an ethics commission.
Article 17: Responsibility
If an event independent of the will of the Organizer prevents the Concours from proceeding, the Organizer can in no case be considered responsible. The Organizer reserves the right to cancel the Concours, to modify the original planned date, to shorten it, to prolong it, to modify conditions or the proceedings in case of force majeure (epidemic, fire, natural catastrophe, strike, terrorist act, etc.), an event independent of his or her responsibility or justified necessity. This responsibility cannot be demanded by a candidate. Nor can the Organizer be held responsible in case of theft, loss, lateness or damage during the transport of the samples.
Article 18: Consulting the regulations
The present regulations can be: