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Illegal vodka danger

City of York Council

11:11am 23rd November 2011
(Updated 6:45am 16th December 2011)

City of York Council's Food and Safety Unit is warning residents of the dangers of an illegal vodka product believed to have been found in York.

The council's Food and Safety Unit were alerted that Drop Vodka was on sale in York after a complaint from a customer who had bought a bottle.

The vodka may contain Isopropyl alcohol and Chloroform. 

Isopropyl alcohol is widely used as a solvent and cleaning fluid and is not particularly toxic.

Chloroform, however, is no longer widely used due to its toxicity and it is a probable human carcinogen. When consumed with alcohol its toxic effects are increased.

Since the incident Food Standards Officers have seized six more bottles of the product from an off licence in York and are awaiting test results.  

The product is believed to be the same Drop Vodka product recently found by West Yorkshire Trading Standards. This product was found to contain chloroform and isopropyl alcohol and it's likely that the product found in York will have the same composition.

Sean Suckling, Food and Safety Unit Manager at City of York Council, said:

"We would ask the public to let us know of anywhere that is selling the product and if they have already bought the product, not to drink it, and to contact us immediately.

"Drop Vodka is not a legitimate brand and people should contact the Food and Safety Unit on (01904) 551 525 if they see it for sale. No duty has been paid on the bottles and it is illegal to sell it.

"As yet, it is not known who is bottling this product, but it is clear that they are criminals who have no thought to the safety and well being of the public."

Cllr Sandy Fraser, Cabinet Member for Crime and Community Safety, at City of York Council, said:

"The people behind the production and distribution of Drop Vodka are undoubtedly criminals, but anyone selling it to the public is equally culpable. 

"They are putting profit before the health of the public and could be prosecuted."

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