In 4 years, more than 100 thousand counterfeit beer bottles in Brazil


Remove the label and cap from a cheap beer, and stick the label and cap from a more expensive beer on it. Technically, it is not a complex process. Easy, even, considering that it brings three-digit profits. This was what a supposedly peaceful merchant from the Jardim Romano neighborhood, in the East Zone of São Paulo, was doing, according to agents from the State Department of Criminal Investigations (Deic) who arrested him. He took bottles from a small brewery from the city of São Paulo of the same name, and made them pass through two of the beers with the greatest participation in the Brazilian market.

In May, five people were arrested by PMs from São Paulo, in a house in Ferraz de Vasconcellos, a city in the São Paulo Metropolitan Region. Two 20-year-olds and one 18-year-old caught with 64 crates of beer said they had been hired three months ago by the two property owners to basically do the same thing, replacing the cheapest labels and caps with the most expensive ones. In July last year, the same Deic had already arrested a bricklayer who worked in a similar way on Avenida Parada Pinto, in Vila Nova Cachoeirinha, in the north of the city.

It is a situation in which the consumer loses, who buys a cat in a poke, and the companies, which not only stop selling their products but also have the brands improperly transmitted. The country's largest consumer market, São Paulo, no wonder, seems to be a constant target of counterfeiters, but it is far from being an exception. In the past four years, civilian and military police officers across the country have dismantled at least 17 schemes for this type of crime in seven states and the Federal District, according to a survey by Dois Fingers in Collar with police sources and online journals across the country.

In 2014 alone (which is not over yet, as we know), I was able to identify 6 different cases, the same number as in 2013. Another 3 cases were reported by the authorities in 2012 and 2 in 2011. In total, 50 people were arrested, including three minors. age (which are “apprehended” to use the correct technical term). The volume involved in these frauds is 101,8 bottles, or just over 60 liters.

I know the number is impressive, but let's take it easy with Andor, drinkers. Brazilian beer production is almost 14 billion liters per year, according to data from the Beverage Control System (Sicobe), therefore, the total volume of counterfeits represents only 0,0004% of the total. It is a drop in the ocean of beer consumed by Brazilians. Considering that the four largest companies in the sector in the country produce 97% of the beer on Brazilian lands, according to their association, CervBrasil, there is another practical limitation on the scope that fraud can have.

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Source: O Globo Online