Welcome to Alcohol Action Station edition #110
Issue no. 110
In this Issue
  • Welcome to Alcohol Action Station
  • Did you know?
  • Cider Ad Banned In The UK
  • Gruen Discusses Advertising in Sport
  • Global Alcohol Policy Conference
  • Off-premise Outlet Density Related to Injury Rates
  • Reflections on THE Secondary Supply Campaign
  • Take Action on Alcohol Advertising!
  • We Want To Know What You Think!
  • Alcohol in the Media
  • The Facts 

Welcome to Alcohol Action Station

Independent fact check by ABC has found that claims made by the Brewers Association about alcohol advertising and young people do not check out. ABC Fact Check
ABC Fact Check investigated a claim made by Denita Wawn, the Chief Executive of the Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand where she said “The evidence is clear. There is no or very little causation between alcohol misuse and alcohol advertising, and alcohol misuse includes underage drinking.”
ABC interviewed a range of alcohol experts, including Professor Kypros Kypri, Dr David Jernigan, and Professor Mike Daube.
The verdict of the investigation was that “while more research about the relationship between alcohol advertising and drinking habits is needed, experts say the weight of evidence clearly shows a significant risk attached to advertising exposure and youth drinking. Mrs Wawn’s claim there is no or very little causation between alcohol advertising and alcohol misuse, including underage drinking, doesn’t check out.”
Want more?
Read the full report online
Until next time,
Danica Keric, McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth
Megan De Piazz, Injury Control Council of WA

did you know?

The self-regulatory system of alcohol advertising in Australia has consistently failed to ensure that alcohol is promoted responsibly and that young people’s exposure to alcohol advertising is minimised.
Source: Alcohol Advertising Review Board Annual Report 2014-15.
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Cider Ad Banned in the UK

Great news coming from England and Wales this month, where young people were successful in banning an ad that showed alcohol as ‘being a priority in life’. The YAAC group
The Youth Alcohol Advertising Council, supported by Alcohol Concern in the UK, are a group of people from across England and Wales who meet to review current alcohol advertising against key principles of the Advertising Standards Code.
The group raised a complaint about a Strongbow ad which portrayed a spoof awards ceremony with the winning category called “Best Strongbow as my other half”. “The winner of the award, Carl, wasn’t there to accept the award because he was “on a date” but he sent an acceptance speech professing his “love” for the Heineken-owned cider brand,” writes The Drum.
Tom Smith, Head of Policy at Alcohol Concern said: “Not only is it appalling that a company such as Heineken UK, with marketing budgets of millions, is failing to comply with the advertising codes, but it’s left to young people to spot these adverts and highlight these failings.” 
Heineken was told their YouTube ad for Strongbow breached responsible advertising regulations and that it must not appear again in its current form.
Want more?
Read the full story on the Alcohol Concern website and through media coverage.

Gruen Discusses Advertising in Sport

ABC’s Gruen panel discussed advertising in sport, and particularly during the AFL and NRL grand finals in last week’s episode. They also talked about alcohol advertising as part of this. Gruen
“Most people watched the footy finals for the footy. We watched the footy finals for the ads,” said the Gruen team on Twitter.  
The team noticed a staggering 2500 logos in just the first quarter of the footy grand final. Todd Sampson said that logos are used to prime consumers and that our decisions are based on priming, despite what most people believe.
The panel also discussed the loophole in alcohol advertising which allows alcohol ads to be broadcast in association with live sport at times when young people would normally be protected. Lauren Fried said that advertisers have a responsibility to ensure consistency and that if it’s inappropriate to advertise something on a Tuesday, it should be inappropriate to advertise it on a Saturday.
Check out the episode to see who is exactly being sold to and the value of being a major sponsor of Australian sport.   
If you missed it, catch up on the episode on iview.

Global Alcohol Policy Conference

The Global Alcohol Policy Conference was held in Edinburgh, Scotland this month with the theme “Momentum for Change: Research and Advocacy Reducing Alcohol Harm”.twitter
The conference was a great success, with over 60 countries represented. There was a significant focus on alcohol advertising and its regulation, the price of alcohol, and alcohol availability.   
Julia Stafford from the McCusker Centre presented at the conference on the work of the Alcohol Advertising Review Board, a world-first alternative alcohol advertising review system.
The conference participants have called on governments and communities around the world to support and implement the World Health Organization’s global strategies on alcohol, focussing on the most effective and cost-effective actions, including the three ‘best buys’ – increasing the price of alcohol, reducing its physical availability, and restricting its marketing.
Dr David Jernigan closed the conference by saying that together we will create a world free of alcohol harm.
Want more?
Read the conference declaration.
Read summaries of the conference on DrinkTank.
Check out the tweets from the conference on Twitter - #gapc2015.

Off-premise Outlet Density Related to Injury Rates

New research from Melbourne has investigated the relationship between injuries and the density of off-premise alcohol outlets (e.g. liquor stores and liquor barns).
Key findings include:
  • Chain outlets were significantly larger and sold cheaper alcohol compared with independent outlets.
  • Off-premise outlet density was positively related to both intentional and unintentional injuries.
  • Chain outlet density was also related to both intentional and unintentional injuries.
The authors conclude that greater off-premises outlet density is related to greater incidence of traumatic injury, and that chain outlets appear to contribute most substantially to traumatic injury risk.
Want more?
Read the full study report in Addiction.

Reflections on the Secondary Supply Campaign

Sam Menezes, the Perth mum who campaigned for secondary supply laws in WA, has written a blog piece about her experience in campaigning, her motivations and next steps.Sam Menezes
Sam writes, “Talking publicly about these issues is a positive step because it is helping people make educated choices based on evidence. As adults, we are the biggest role models to our youth and we are crucial in changing the culture of excessive alcohol consumption in Australia.”
“I will continue to advocate for ways to protect our youth from alcohol…In particular, I am interested in legislating against uncontrolled alcohol advertising on social media and reducing the promotion of alcohol via sport, as well as the introduction of controlled purchase operations,” writes Sam.
Want more?
Read Sam’s full blog piece on the Holyoake website.

Take Action on Alcohol Advertising!


If you see an alcohol ad that concerns you, you can do something about it! The Alcohol Advertising Review Board (AARB) accepts complaints about alcohol ads from the Australian community. It’s a very simple process - we accept complaints by email, an online form, phone or the post. All we need is a picture or link to the ad and a few sentences on why it concerns you.
To keep up to-do-date on AARB determination, reports, and interesting research, follow @AlcoholAdReview on Twitter.

We Want To Know What You Think!

We are always keen to hear from community mmegaphoneembers about the alcohol issues that concern you.
We’ve had a suggestion to include comments from community members on key alcohol-related issues in future editions and we would love to be able to do that.

If you would like to have your say, get in touch and let us know your thoughts. Send us a line at or give Danica a call on 9266 4132 if you would like to have a chat.

Alcohol in the Media

Divergent alcohol levies in budget office’s sights
The Australian, 15 October 2015
The Parliamentary Budget Office has given ammunition to a campaign to overhaul alcohol taxes in Australia, finding the current system that levies different rates for beer, wine and spirits lacks a consistent set of policy principals.
Young offenders must be screened for fetal alcohol spectrum disorders before sentencing
The Conversation, 13 October 2015
Australia’s prison population is growing at unprecedented rates.
Sober thoughts
The Sunday Times UK, 11 October 2015
The pink ribbon associated with breast cancer awareness is the most glamorous of fundraising icons and one of the most lucrative.
NSW government shakes up alcohol and gaming regulation
Sydney Morning Herald, 10 October 2015
The state’s independent liquor and gambling regulator will undergo a major shakeup and an avenue will be created to appeal against its decisions, under proposed changes by the Baird government.
Australia’s binge drinking culture puts mental health at risk, experts warn
ABC News, 9 October 2015
Australians are going to have to wish for more than ‘good health’ before a bout of binge-drinking to avoid sobering consequences to their mental health. 
Letter: Can’t we have a grand final without alcohol?
The Chronicle, 9 October 2015
At all major sports finals like the AFL and NRL, and also at other big events, we see and hear, especially on TV, everything seems to portray the need to celebrate with alcohol.
Push for liquor law changes
Echo News, 8 October 2015
The State Government hopes its proposed changes to liquor laws will be promptly read and debated in the Upper House when Parliament resumes on Tuesday. 
Mexican tequila and Canadian whiskey cheaper under Trans-Pacific Partnership deal removing tariffs, 7 October 2015
Mexican tequila and Canadian whiskey will become cheaper due to the new Trans-Pacific Partnership. 
Lockout laws work: regulation key to curbing alcohol abuse
The Australian, 3 October 2015
When it comes to the alcohol industry and the public interest it seems fair to say never the twain shall meet.
Sale of alcohol in SA supermarkets, drinking by minors up for debate, State Government says
ABC News, 2 October 2015
The sale of alcohol in South Australian supermarkets is up for discussion as part of a planned overhaul of the state’s liquor licensing laws, the Government has said.

The Facts

Six to seven years after trading hour restrictions in Newcastle, research shows that:
  1. The reduction in assault in years 1-5 following the restriction has at least been maintained, such that assault counts in 2013-15 are roughly half what there were before the restrictions were implemented in Newcastle.
  2. In contrast, the assault rate in Hamilton, which was subject to a lockout from late 2009, but was not required to cease serving alcohol earlier, has not decreased significantly.
  3. The findings add further evidence to support the view that it is the cessation of alcohol consumption, not lockouts, that is key to achieving reduced assault risk in the night-time economy.
Source: Kypri K, et al 2015. Night-time assaults in Newcastle 6-7 years after trading hour restrictions [letter to the editor]. Drug and Alcohol Review.
Alcohol Action Station aims to provide the WA community with the tools to take action to reduce harms from alcohol among young people. It is provided by the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth in association with the Injury Control Council of WA. You are receiving this email because you have subscribed to receive Alcohol Action Station fortnightly e‐newsletters and urgent bulletins.

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