Understanding Champagne Label Codes
8th March 2014
There are many different combinations in which Champagne grapes can be grown and made into the sparkling wine. How this happens affects what is put on a Champagne bottle label. Here is an explanation of what the letters you see on the bottles mean.
NM – Négociant-Manipulant – This appears on the label of large Champagne houses who buy their grapes from a wide variety of other growers then make the Champagne under their own brand.
RM – Récoltant-Manipulant – This is a Champagne which is both grown and made by the same producer, known as a Grower Champagne.
CM – Coopérative-Manipulant – This is on the label when a group of small growers blend their grapes collectively and make a sparkling wine under one or more brands. They will usually be involved in the wine-making too.
RC – Récoltant-Coopérateur – This is when a grower provides grapes to a Coopérative- Manipulant and they make the wine on the grower’s behalf, under the grower’s own brand but without their involvement.
SR – Sociéte des Récoltants – When a small number of growers get together and share the same winery but make their own labels. This differs from a Coopérative-Manipulant because the growers keep their grapes separate, make their own brand, and are directly involved in the winemaking process.
ND – Negociant Distributeur – A company selling Champagne it did not make.
MA – Marque d’ Acheteur – A brand name owned by the purchaser, such as a restaurant, supermarket or wine merchant.
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