The organisers of Prowein have accused the London Wine Fair team of being behind a freak series of events that have disrupted the Dusseldorf exhibition’s first show since Covid.
Suspicions were first aroused when the tram network was closed down, following the discovery of a ‘ticking package’ left in one of the carriages.
The ‘bomb’ turned out to be a bag full of leaflets for the London Wine Fair and a John Lewis alarm clock.
Initially dismissed as a careless accident the organisers became increasingly suspicious after a series of phone calls throughout the first day caused repeated evacuations of the hall.
These ranged from an ‘escaped polar bear’ from the local zoo heading for the entrance to warnings of an ‘out of control milk float full of explosives’ and, finally, the announcement of a ‘pop-up tasting of €30 Burgundy in central Dusseldorf’.
Jurgen Alooze of the Deutsches Wein Polizei (DWP) admitted that, on reflection, they may have taken the warnings too seriously.
‘The polar bear and milk float were credible threats,’ he told Fake Booze. ‘But the whole idea of sub-E30 Burgundy was clearly ridiculous.’
The fair’s organisers say that the informant didn’t leave their name but ‘had an English accent and sounded like they were laughing’.
The centre of the city has also seen what Prowein believe are organised clashes between security forces and ‘loutish’ members of the British wine trade.
Shocked passers-by accused them of singing divisive songs such as ‘Two Wine Bores and one Wine Challenge’, ‘Ten German Rieslings’ and ‘Prowein has only got one hall’ outside a popular bar.
‘They were drunk, disruptive and totally unprofessional,’ said Alooze. ‘So much the same as always.’
Confirmation that these events were part of a carefully orchestrated campaign of disruption by the London Wine Fair came when security staff found LWF head, Olympia Floorplan, apparently attempting to insert Nitrous Oxide into the air conditioning system.
‘We have had many reports of people falling asleep during the expo,’ said Prowein CEO, Vicius Klasch. ‘And now we find our biggest rival with a bag full of anaesthetic gas canisters!’
However, Ms Floorplan denied any criminal behaviour.
‘Believe me you don’t need a sedative to send people to sleep at Prowein,’ she told Fake Booze. ‘The programme of seminars will do that.’
Having several vials of anaesthetic gas in her bag, she said, was ‘just a strange coincidence – rather like the accidental way in which Prowein’s organisers completely coincidentally rearranged their show to clash with ours – even though we’ve had the same dates for the last 40 years.’
Vicius Klasch, however, dismissed this defence, and said that Ms Floorplan’s behaviour should see her locked up.
‘They are simply annoyed that they have not beaten us in a game of footfall since 1966,’ he said.
‘Face it. For you, Tommy, the Exhibition Ratings War is over…’