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(1)For the purposes of the Customs and Excise Acts 1979, the strength, weight or volume of any spirits shall be ascertained in accordance with the following provisions of this section.
(2)Spirits shall be deemed to be at proof if the volume of the ethyl alcohol contained therein made up to the volume of the spirits with distilled water has a weight equal to that of twelve-thirteenths of a volume of distilled water equal to the volume of the spirits, the volume of each liquid being computed as at 51*F
(3)" Degree of proof ", " degree over proof " and " degree under proof " shall be construed by reference to a scale on which 100° denotes the strength of spirits at proof and—
(a)101°, or 1 degree over proof, denotes the strength of spirits which would be at proof if there were added thereto such quantity of distilled water as would increase by 1 per cent. the volume of the spirits computed as at 50°F ;
(b)99°, or 1 degree under proof, denotes the strength of spirits which would be at proof if there were removed therefrom such quantity of distilled water as would reduce by 1 per cent. the volume of the spirits computed as at 50°F; and so in proportion for any other number of degrees.
(4)The equivalent at proof of any spirits not at proof shall for the purposes of the Customs and Excise Acts 1979 be deemed to be their volume—
(a)multiplied by the number of degrees of proof representing their strength; and
(b)divided by 100.
(5)The Commissioners may make regulations prescribing the means to be used for ascertaining for any purpose the strength, weight or volume of spirits, and any such regulations may provide that in ascertaining for any purpose the strength of any spirits any substance contained therein which is not ethyl alcohol or distilled water may be treated as if it were.
(6)Different regulations may be made under subsection (5) above for different purposes.
(7)This section shall apply to methylated spirits and to any fermented liquor as it applies to spirits but, in relation to wine, made-wine or cider shall not apply so as to prevent the strength, weight or volume of wine, made-wine or cider from being ascertained for the purpose of charging duty thereon by methods other than that provided in this section.
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