Sep 13, 2015 by Stephane
It has come to my attention that two websites (westvleterenshop.com and westvleterenbeers.com) have plastered a warning on their pages accusing me of selling "Non authentic Westvleteren".
My response is that this is of course I sell only authentic Westvleteren.
There is no such thing as "non authentic Westvleteren". I'm not sure what a "non authentic" beer would be and to the best of my knowledge there are no Belgian beers being somehow copied or sold under a different name.
Obviously, all Westvleteren comes from the Sint Sixtus abbey. Wherever you buy Westvleteren and regardless of the price, you will always get "the real thing".
The accusation is therefore baseless and simply false.
Now, the reason why this accusation is being made becomes apparent from an email I received this morning:
"Dear Sir, Mme Being the owners of the WestvleterenShop.com, which you probably already visited, we are concerned with yours new webshop. After the creation of the second big webshop of Westvleteren (westvleterenbeers.com) we made an agreement with that person that we should keep the prices equivalent in order to stay competitive, without turning down the prices. What has always worked out perfectly. Now we noticed that yours prices are extremely low; What, in our opinion, isn't the way to attract new clients. Knowing this extremely exclusive beer, should keep the exclusive price that clients are open to pay for. Could you inform us if you would be open to discuss this, in order to work out all 3 to be competitive , without giving away the beer? If not, we'll turn down the prices to the lowest in order to gain back our n°1 position, what would be a shame. Sincerely The WestvleterenShop"
In this email, the owner of westvleterenshop.com claims he agreed with westvleterenbeers.com to keep prices artificially high, and he asks me to do the same.
This kind of price fixing is illegal and it's anti-competitive. It's not fair to consumers and not good for business.
My response to this is - I will price my products as I see fit and I invite both of them to do the same.
My goal in posting this information is to be as transparent as possible and to provide a little insight in to the behaviour of some of the people involved in this business.
My advise to customers is - regardless of price think carefully of who you are doing business with.
I welcome any comments or questions via the contact form.