Week #33 Global Alcohol Policy Round-Up
WORLDWIDE WEEKLY ALCOHOL POLICY, SCIENCE, INDUSTRY HIGHLIGHTS
Welcome to another week of carefully curated alcohol policy news, latest science updates, insights into Big Alcohol revelations as well as some outstanding blog posts from IOGT’s Global Voices.
For week 33, our Global Alcohol Policy Round-Up contains:
- Alcohol policy updates come from the Philippines (alcohol taxation), Kenya (burden of addictive substances and behaviors), Myanmar (rising mental health problem), Denmark (rising youth alcohol use) and New Zealand (10 years of government failure in alcohol policy)…
- Fresh science updates are about alcohol policy and initmate partner homicides as well as effective components of adolescent mental health programs…
- Our Big Alcohol monitor exposes beer giants’ turf war in South Africa (and other countries)…
- On our Global Voices Blog Portal we have two new stories: Nils writes about the alcohol problem of the Norwegian Oil Fund, and Tunga writes about his contemplations from Egypt and the African Union meeting on drug policy and health…
Philippines: Alcohol Tax Rise Takes First Hurdle
The House of Representatives’ Committee on Ways and Means has approved and advanced to the plenary the bill on increasing and restructuring the excise tax rates on alcohol, as part of the priority tax reforms under the Duterte administration.
IOGT International has previously reported about the tax increase initiative to help fund the universal health coverage program for all people in the Philippines.
Kenya: Alcohol, Other Drugs, Gambling Fuel School Drop-Out
The recent County Dialogues Report reveals alcohol, other drugs and gambling as leading causes for children dropping out of school in Kenya.
The report covers a range of causative factors for poor educational performance and kids dropping out of school in Kenya. These factors include alcohol, other drug use and gambling.
Myanmar: Rising Mental Health Issues Linked to Alcohol
There is an increase in the number of mental health patients seeking treatment in hospitals in Myanmar. Most of the cases reported are related to alcohol consumption.
The data come from Ministry of Health and Sports’ report about latest development during the previous three years.
According to an official of the Ministry of Health and Sports:
- The number of hospitalized patients increased from over 36,000 in 2012 to over 86,000 in 2017 (an increase from 2.4% to 3%) and the root cause is alcohol consumption.
- Alcohol addiction increased around 2.5 fold, from 2013 to 2018.
Denmark: Alcohol Use Rising Among Youth
The trend of declining alcohol consumption in Denmark has gone into reverse with consumption rising among youth, according to a recent survey.
According to newest data, not only, four out of five 15-year-olds have already tried consuming alcohol, but one out of ten 11-year-olds and one out of three 13-year-olds have tried it as well.
Another poll by TV2 has found, one out of five people in Denmark think it is okay for young people to consume alcohol before they are 16 years old.
New Zealand: 10 Year Government Alcohol Policy Failure
It is 10 years since the New Zealand Law Commission reviewed the alcohol laws in New Zealand. Yet the recommendations from the review have been ignored by successive governments over the decade.
This 10 year government alcohol policy failure has led to drastic effects for New Zealand. Over the past 10 years, alcohol resulted in,
- 8000 premature deaths,
- 700,000 physical and sexual assaults,
- up to 30,000 children born with alcohol-related brain damage,
- social costs over $70 billion.
Alcohol Policies and Alcohol Involvement in Intimate Partner Homicide in the U.S.
Adolescent Mental Health Program Components and Behavior Risk Reduction: A Meta-analysis
South Africa: Turf War Between Beer Giants
Heineken is gearing up to increase their share and loosen AB InBev’s grip of the South African Beer market in an ongoing turf war between the multinational beer giants.
AB InBev currently dominates the South African beer market accounting for 88% of South Africa’s beer volumes and 86% of beer value.
AB InBev, the world’s largest beer producer, became the dominant brewer in South Africa when it purchased SABMiller in 2016 in a corporate mega-merger. Since the takeover, AB InBev has overhauled its portfolio and increased distribution of non-SAB brands such as Budweiser and Corona. Sales in South Africa, and the wider African beer market, was a key reason for the SABMiller deal.
Beer giants at war for market domination
To compete with AB InBev, Heineken, the second largest beer producer in the world, is gearing up. Recently Heineken invested in its Sedibeng brewery near Johannesburg.
This investment means an aggressive push to increase Heineken beer consumption. The aim is to hit annual capacity of 7 million hectolitres in SouthAfrica. Heineken is also expanding its South African beer portfolio with the addition of low- and no-alcohol brands including Heineken 0.0, Windhoek Lite, Amstel Radler.
South Africa is not the only country in which the two beer giants are waging war. In March, Heineken opened a US$100m brewery in Mozambique, where AB InBev controls 99% of the beer market through the Cervejas De Moçambique unit, also inherited from SABMiller.
There are numerous other examples of the beer giants’ aggressive push for increasing beer sales and relentless competition among themselves. The countries and markets are:
- Ivory Coast,
- Thailand and Asia, as well as
- the EU.
The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Has An Alcohol Problem