Stoli Group has announced that it will discontinue the use of the Stolichnaya name for its vodka, in direct response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The Latvian-produced vodka will now be exclusively sold and marketed as Stoli on account of the founder’s “vehement position on the Putin regime”, and the brand’s aim to represent Stoli’s roots in Latvia.
Stoli has been produced in Latvia since the early 2000s. A separate Stolichnaya brand is produced and sold in Russia by the government-owned Soyuzplodoimport company.
In addition to the name change, Stoli Group will begin sourcing grain from Slovakia rather than Russia. British CEO Damian McKinney said the rebrand is an “actionable, meaningful thing we can do to make it clear that we support Ukraine”, adding: “We have employees, partners and distributors in the region directly impacted. They are asking that we take a bold stand.”
The move comes as some UK retailers started boycotting Russian vodkas.
McKinney said he is keen to “correct misconceptions” about vodka that is not actually produced in Russia.