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Total Wine & More halts sale of Russian-made vodka, Publix follows suit

Publix Guns
May 19, 2013 file photo, (AP Photo/Scott Iskowitz, File)

In a show of support for Ukraine, national liquor store chain Total Wine & More has stopped the sale of vodka originating from Russia in their stores.

Locally, Publix Supermarkets, which operates stand-alone liquor stores at over 300 locations in 7 states, has also decided to stop selling Russian vodka.

Total Wine has 229 locations in 27 states.

The measure may end up only having a slight impact as just over 1% of all vodka sold in the U.S. originates from Russia according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States.

Two of the more popular brands sold in America, Stoli and Smirnoff, are made in Riga, Latvia and in the U.S. respectively.

According to their website, Smirnoff was founded in the United States by Russian immigrant Rudolph Kunett who purchased the brand’s North American rights from original owner Vladimir Smirnov in 1933.

Smirnoff then established the first ever vodka distillery in the U.S.

Latvian-owned Stoli issued a statement on their Facebook page: “Stoli Group stands for peace in Europe and in solidarity with the Ukrainian people. #LiberateUkraine”

Publix and Total Wine join a growing number of companies boycotting Russia and their products including Apple, FIFA soccer, the National Hockey League, and numerous music artists.