Agave Spirituous And The Landscapes Of Mexico

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3.- Standards regulating the trade of distilled agave beverages

The particular characteristics of the territory and the different forms of regional production define the names of distilled agave beverages and generally refer to the local name of the agave plants, the community or the producing region. The distribution and commercialization of agave distilled beverages is regulated by Denominations of Origin (DO), registered by the Mexican State before the World Industrial Property Organization (WIPO), to be recognized as the country of origin of the product and affirm its authenticity.]

The standards for the elaboration of the product protected by the DO are contained in the Mexican Official Standards (NOM) and are mandatory. The Mexican Official Standards that regulate the production of agave distillates are:

NOM-006-SCFI-2005 for Tequila;
NOM-070-SCFI-2016 for Mezcal;
NOM-168-SCFI-2004 for Bacanora;
NOM-159-SCFI-2004 for Sotol;
NOM-239-SE-2020 for Raicilla.
NOM-199-SCFI-2017 for Agave Distilled Beverages;

The most popular agave distilled beverage is Tequila and the United States, is the country that received in 2021, almost 85% of tequila exports. U.S. consumers prefer Tequila even more than Mexicans themselves. According to the National Chamber of the Tequila Industry (CNIT), tequila exports to the United States increased, in the first quarter of 2022, 69% compared to the same period in 2019.