Most don’t favour new Alcohol Bill

Banning images of people and pub scenes, animals and scenic shots of Ireland from appearing in alcohol advertisements under proposals in the current Public Health (Alcohol) Bill is opposed by 62% of people in a new survey by independent research agency iReach.

The poll found only 17% in favour of the measures, with 72% believing these image-banning measures will not reduce alcohol misuse.

Just 12% believe they’ll work.

The study was conducted as part of iReach’s Consumer Omnibus Survey, with fieldwork undertaken from the 5th to the 11th of October 2017. The iReach Consumer Decisions Omnibus delivers a high level of statistical accuracy, with a sample size of over 1,000 interviews.

The survey found that a majority of Irish consumers don’t think the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill should be introduced in its current form. The Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland–commissioned poll found that Irish consumers are not in favour of a number of measures proposed in the Bill including advertising restrictions which will make Ireland one of the most restrictive countries in the world for marketing alcohol products.

As part of this survey, consumers were also asked if they believe the Government’s proposed measures – structural separation, advertising restrictions and health warnings on alcohol labels – are going too far or are the best way to target alcohol misuse. 47% believe the Government’s proposed measures are too strict with just 27% saying they’re the right thing to do.

“There’s a misconception that the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill has broad-sweeping public support,” said ABFI Director Patricia Callan, “This research clearly shows that Irish consumers are against certain measures proposed in the Bill.

“While the drinks industry supports the objectives of the Bill – to tackle harmful and underage drinking in Ireland – we’re concerned that certain proposals in the Bill are poorly targeted and are not based on evidence. This means that they’re unlikely to actually reduce alcohol misuse.

“Furthermore, these measures will have unintended negative consequences on jobs and businesses across the country, from grain to glass,” she warned, “It’s vital that the Government does not damage a thriving Irish industry when introducing legislation to achieve public health objectives.”

The Alcohol Bill also allows for regulations to stop establishments from supplying free alcohol. The poll found 57% against the banning of complimentary drinks in certain spaces such as in hairdressers or supermarkets. Additionally, 71% say that banning complimentary drinks in these establishments won’t reduce alcohol misuse.



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