Week #34 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 34, our Global Alcohol Policy Round-Up contains:
- Alcohol policy updates come from the UK, Japan, Sweden and France…
- Fresh science updates are about trajectories in alcohol problems based on early adolescent alcohol use, and young women’s narrative on sex in the context of heavy alcohol use…
- Our Big Alcohol monitor exposes alcohol industry attempts to dismantle the Norwegian alcohol policy model, how Big Alcohol targets college students in the US, and how AB InBev circumvents the ban in New Delhi…
UK: Baby Boomers Drive Alcohol Consumption
While alcohol consumption steadily declines with young people, baby boomers continue to drive more alcohol consumption.
Japan: Alcohol Tax Hike to Address Debt
Consumption tax is set to rise to 10% from the current 8% by October 1, 2019 in Japan. This tax hike is applied to consumer products, including alcohol as well.
The tax hike will not affect food in general and several other products but will affect alcohol, dining out and commuter passes among others.
The move to increase taxes is to address the huge public debt in Japan.
Sweden: Alcohol Cause for Workplace Concerns
Many people worry about colleagues’ alcohol habits. Every other person has had concerns that a colleague has alcohol problems.
According to a survey presented in Systembolaget’s Alcohol Report 2019, half of the participants have at one time suspected that a colleague or manager at their workplace has alcohol problems.
France: Political Struggle Over Loi Evin
The health minister of France wants the Loi Evin – France’s alcohol control law – extended while a group of 105 MPs of the ruling party proposed relaxing the law.
A relaxation of the legislation, in place since 1991, has been widely discussed in France and 105 members of parliament (MPs) from the ruling La République en Marche party proposed a law to relax the legislation “in a supervised manner.”
The health minister of France, Agnès Buzyn suggested the Loi Evin, which among other stipulations prohibits the sale of alcohol in sports stadiums, should be extended to include the alcohol consumption in hospitality boxes.
The question is perhaps rather to take away alcohol from VIP boxes, and in any case certainly not increase its distribution,” said Agnès Buzyn, French Health Minister, as per Sport Business.
Trajectories of Alcohol Use Problems based on Early Adolescent Alcohol Use: Findings from a 35 Year Population Cohort
Young Women’s Narratives on Sex in the Context of Heavy Alcohol Use: Friendships, Gender Norms and the Sociality of Consent
Norway: Alcohol Lobby Seeks to Dismantle Policy Model
Norwegian alcohol lobby group Virke is pushing for Norway’s 3,000 kiosks and gas stations to be licensed to sell beer. The country’s grocery stores already have the rights to sell beer.
Currently Norway operates the government-run alcohol monopoly “Vinmonopolet” – the country’s alcohol retail monopoly – to control availability and affordability of alcohol. The monopoly has been active since 1922.
USA: How Big Beer Targets College Students
In search of sales growth, Big Beer has begun partnering with college football programs across the United States, where alcohol sales have traditionally been banned inside stadiums.
West Virginia was one of the first to sell alcohol in a college stadium. It was followed by Ohio State and Oregon, and then more recently, Texas A&M, Louisiana State, Missouri and Arkansas followed the trend. For example, the football program at the University of Arkansas recently signed a $400,000 sponsorship deal with AB InBev.
Beer less popular with youth
Beer is becoming less popular with young people. According to trade group data, AB InBev’s volume share of the U.S. beer market, by far its largest, has fallen from 49.8% in 2009 to 41.5% in 2017. MillerCoors has seen its position erode during the same period to 25%, a drop of 5.1%.
Big Beer knows they are falling out of favour with young people so they are partnering with football programs around the US to sell beer on-site. Through these partnerships the companies get access and insight into this coveted demographic.
How AB InBev Circumvents New Delhi Ban
New Delhi city government has very recently banned AB InBev from selling its beer for three years. But now, AB InBev has quickly launched a non-alcoholic beer which is going to be available in Delhi markets despite the ongoing ban.
AB InBev – the world’s largest beer producer – is the second biggest alcohol industry actor in India’s $7 billion beer market, accounting for a 17.5% market share, according to research firm IWSR Drinks Market Analysis.
The company has expanded their profile with the launch of Budweiser 0.0, a non-alcoholic beer.
Recently, AB InBev was barred from selling its products in the critical New Delhi market for the alleged tax evasion.