Sweden: Government Takes Action Against Online Wine Trade

The Swedish government has decided to take action against the online wine trade.

In recent years, the online wine trade has increased like an avalanche. From 41 vendors in 2010 to 117 vendors in 2020. Now the government wants to put a stop to it.

Analysis shows the dramatic rise in the number of alcohol salespeople targeting Swedes, and how online sales have increased since it became legal in 2007. But several companies are moving in the gray zone for what is allowed by the Swdish Alcohol Act. Therefore, the the Swedish government is now reacting.

You should not behave like you are a Systembolaget company when you are not,” says Social Minister Lena Hallengren, from the Social Democrats, according to Accent.

Two of the largest companies in the online wine trade industry, Winefinder and Vivino, have, as Accent reported in the past year, been sued by Systembolaget over unauthorized marketing, and for sales that Systembolaget believes are illegal.

The question is now being prepared within the Government Offices and the goal is to solve this problem before the next parliamentary elections, due in September 2022. For a change to legislation, however, a majority is required in the Swedish parliament, Riksdag.

IOGT-NTO, Movendi International’s member organization, welcomes the news:

Sweden has an alcohol retail monopoly that IOGT-NTO believes in and supports.

There is a reason why alcohol is sold by Systembolaget and that is to limit price and availability. These are tools that protect public health, but also reduce the violence in society,” saus IOGT-NTO’s president Johnny Mostacero, according to Accent.