EU: Big Alcohol Wants Special Interest Group in Parliament
Big Alcohol wants to establish a special interest group in the EU Parliament.
The lobby front group representing Big Alcohol at the EU level “Spirits Europe” has said they strongly support the re-establishment of the Parliamentary Intergroup on Wine, Spirits and Quality Foodstuffs.
The group claims alcohol is the second biggest agro food export for the EU and that the industry provided employment for many Europeans.
According to a spokesperson, the intergroup intends to “discuss and propose suitable policy and best practice for our sector, and will allow for effective communication and information-sharing with key policy-makers in the European Parliament.”
They also want to regulate taxes and illicit trade from within this Parliamentary group.
Big Alcohol already influences policy decisions to their benefit. An example can be taken from the ANPAA report on Big Alcohol influence in France.
Big Alcohol lobby entry points in EU
A case study mapping alcohol industry lobbying in the European Union shows the vast amount of entry points for political interference by the alcohol industry and their front groups, such as SpiritsEurope. This map of entry points for the aggressive and extremely well-funded alcohol industry lobbyists shows the channels of access to European Union institutions and decision-makers.
It has been found that when alcohol policies depend on industry self-regulation they fail to protect people from alcohol. It is massive conflict of interest for the industry producing, selling and marketing the products that cause the harm to be a part of policy-making processes which aim to control and regulate that same industry.
A special interest group for Big Alcohol within the European Parliament would be a move against effective public health policy.