Pernod Ricard turns to QR codes to fight fakers

Key Pernod Ricard brands + QR codeFrench beverage company Pernod Ricard will add QR codes to all products sold in China from next April in a bid to thwart counterfeiters and engage with customers.

Customers buying Pernod Ricard beverages will be able to scan the codes using their smartphone and not only check if the bottle is genuine but also learn about the production process and other features of the brand, whilst providing valuable market intelligence to the manufacturer, according to a report.

The move is an extension of the company's use of QR codes and smartphone apps to engage with its customers, for example by providing access to personalised drink recipes.

Pernod Ricard has adopted a multi-layered approach to anti-counterfeiting, with field teams constantly scanning the marketplace for fakes and packaging innovations adopted to make it harder for criminals to mimic its products. In addition the QR codes, the company has also introduced distinctive bottle designs for its Ricard and Absolut Elyx brands that adhere to certain specific 3D dimensions and are harder to copy.

In 2011, the company scored a victory against counterfeits in Asia after Chinese Supreme People’s Court handed down a verdict on a case involving Chivas Regal and Royal Salute in Daxing.

The defendant was sentenced to four years in prison and ordered to pay a heavy fine for trademark infringement. This proceeding was considered a landmark case in 2011 in China, among decisions relating to intellectual property rights, says Pernod Ricard on its website. 

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