ASAI to review current guidance on the advertising of 0.0% alcohol

Review taking place due to growing consumer concern about advertising of 0.0.% alcohol brands
Pubs, hotels, restaurants, visitor attractions, tour operators, coach service providers and other businesses are experiencing “shocking levels of cancellations” and “almost zero new bookings”.

The Advertising Standards Authority of Ireland has reported a recent increase in the number of complaints it has received about the advertising of 0.0.% alcohol brands

A review of the existing guidance and code relating to the advertising of non-alcoholic product variants is being undertaken by the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI), the independent, self-regulatory body “committed to promoting the highest standards of marketing communications in Ireland”.

The review is taking place due to a recent increase in the number of complaints being made to the ASAI about the advertising of 0.0.% alcohol brands, and also as part of the organisations ongoing commitment to understand consumer issues and concerns regarding advertising.

The ASAI introduced a Guidance Note relating to the advertising of non-alcohol product variants in 2019 which is available to view online here. The impending review could lead to either updated industry guidance on the code or a change in the code itself.

As part of the review, the organisation will assess similar guidance and regulation regarding 0.0% alcohol advertising and marketing communications currently in place throughout the EU, and will consult with partner self-regulatory organisations and other advertising regulatory bodies such as the International Council for Advertising Self-Regulation (ICAS) and The European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA).

The review will be conducted to ensure the organisation is proactively providing up-to date guidance on all areas of advertising and marketing relating to non-alcohol product variants.

“The ASAI is aware of the increased level of conversation and consumer concern regarding marketing communications and the advertising of non-alcohol product variants,” said Orla Twomey, chief executive of the ASAI.

“We are undertaking a review to see if additional rules and/or guidance is required in light of these emerging concerns,” she continued. “As well as the general rules on truthfulness, honesty and substantiation, the ASAI code contains strict rules regarding the advertising of Alcohol and Non-Alcoholic Beverages, with an additional guidance note introduced in 2019 specifically focusing on advertising for non-alcohol product variants.”

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