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This Proposed Italian Law Might Shake Up How You Order Drinks In Italy

Planning a wine tour in Tuscany this year? If so, you might want to brush up on how to pronounce those varietals you’ll be tasting — and the foods you’ll pair them with.

Under new legislation introduced by the Brothers of Italy party — the most right-wing leadership party the country has seen since World War II — any Italian found using foreign languages—namely, English—in official communications could be forced to pay a fine up to a whopping €100,000. Proposed by Fabio Rampelli of the nation’s ruling political party, the legislation has yet to be debated on the Parliament floor, but it already has strong support from Italian prime minister Giorgia Meloni.

According to a draft of the legislation acquired by CNN, the law would mandate that each and every individual holding public office have “a written and oral knowledge and mastery of the Italian language.” Further, the draft claims that “Anglomania” — the use of the English language — has only increased in the country since the United Kingdom left the European Union and, in the process, “demeans and mortifies” the Italian language.

In addition to having a firm grasp on the Italian language, the draft demands that Italian be the only language used when drafting official documents, with the only exception being words that are unable to be translated — including job titles and acronyms. The legislation is applicable to every company operating in the country — not just those that are Italian-owned. For any foreign entity who wishes to conduct business in Italy, they will be required to turn over Italian-translated versions of all of their employment contracts and internal documents.

Moreover, the draft outlines that Italian is the only language to be used in official matters, even when non-Italian speaking individuals are present. In Article 2, the Brothers of Italy party clearly lays out the proposition that Italian is to be “mandatory for the promotion and use of public goods and services in the national territory.” The proposed law also reaches beyond government and business affairs going so far as to suggest the establishment of an oversight committee whose job it would be to ensure “the correct use of the Italian language and its pronunciation” in schools, commerce, media, and advertising.

Any individual found to be directly or indirectly going against the terms outlined in the legislation could face fines between €5,000 and €100,000 — roughly $5,435 to $108,705. While it’s unknown exactly how Italy’s massive wine industry will be affected by these changes, it’s safe to assume that the country’s flourishing Prosecco Rosé category — which employs French terms and has benefited from marketing in the English language — may take a significant hit.

The article This Proposed Italian Law Might Shake Up How You Order Drinks In Italy appeared first on VinePair.

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