New evidence: Policies on alcohol marketing are failing youth

A report series published today in the scientific journal Addiction presents the latest evidence on alcohol marketing, its impact on children and the policy mechanisms to address it.

Conclusions from these papers have a direct bearing on the negotiations of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD). As a MEP you will determine the Directive’s level of ambition and its effectiveness in promoting public health, and the European Public Health Alliance encourages you to take account of the findings when making your decision in the forthcoming votes on the Directive.

Key relevant findings from the peer-reviewed articles include:

1. Exposure to alcohol marketing is associated with youth alcohol consumption.

“Young people who have greater exposure to alcohol marketing appear to be more likely subsequently to initiate alcohol use and engage in binge and hazardous drinking.” Jernigan et al. (2016)

2. Alcohol industry self-regulatory codes do not sufficiently protect children and adolescents from exposure to alcohol promotions

“Taken together, the findings suggest that the current self-regulatory systems that govern alcohol marketing practices are not meeting their intended goal of protecting vulnerable populations.” Noel et al. (2016) [1]

“The current alcohol industry marketing complaint process used in a wide variety of countries may be ineffective at removing potentially harmful content from the market-place.” Noel et al. (2016) [2]

3. Effectively enforced statutory regulation, including marketing bans, have greater potential

An evaluation of the French Loi Évin concludes that countries should develop controls and monitoring systems to ensure advertising restrictions are respected, should be ready to counteract alcohol industry lobbying and that prohibitions are probably effective ways of minimising exposure. Legislative inaction and liberalisation of provisions are likely to have the opposite effect. Gallopel-Morvan et al. (2017)

Download the Supplement:
Press Release by the Journal Addiction

Special Issue: The Regulation of Alcohol Marketing: From Research to Public Health Policy
Open access

Related News:

3 Steps Towards Healthier Marketing – Improve the AVMSD

AVMSD: What about our kids?

Briefing I Self-regulation: a false promise for public health?


Nikolai Pushkarev

Policy Coordinator for Food, Drink and Agriculture

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