Alcohol industry slams sensationalist proposals

The alcohol industry has reacted angrily to the Scottish Governments plans to tackle the countrys alcohol abuse problem.

The alcohol industry has reacted angrily to the Scottish Government’s plans to tackle the country’s alcohol abuse problem.

Health secretary Nicola Sturgeon is to unveil the measures, which are expected to include plans for minimum pricing and a ban on two-for-one promotions, this week following a consultation launched last September.

Alcohol industry body The Portman Group says the Government is “not listening to reason”.

“These plans will punish all drinkers while only scratching at the surface of our drinking culture. People who drink to get drunk would not be influenced by these measures,” says the Group’s chairman David Poley.

The proposals, which include a minimum price for alcohol per unit and separate alcohol check-outs in supermarkets to deter impulse buys, were announced last year and are designed to tackle Scotland’s alcohol abuse problems, which are believed to cost about £2.25bn in lost work days and costs to the health service.

Benet Slay (pictured), managing director, Diageo Great Britain, says it shares the Government’s goal of tackling alcohol abuse but is “disappointed” industry concerns have not been listened to.

“It is still progressing with sensationalist policies rather than following evidence based ones that will target the minority of Scots that drink irresponsibly. That is short-term politics making a poor attempt at tackling a serious long-term problem, he says.

Controversial plans to increase the minimum age for buying alcohol in supermarkets and off-licences to 21 have already been rejected by Scottish MPs.

The measures follow the recent launch of a House of Common’s health committee inquiry to look into alcohol misuse and the role of the alcohol industry and marketers.

In addition, the Department of Health’s “Safe. Sensible. Social” alcohol strategy consultation was launched last summer, which includes a proposal that advertisers be forced to include a short public health message, as an “end frame” after TV and cinema ads.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here