During today’s Prime Minister’s questions, Brown said he was “meeting the retail industry over the next few days about the practices in relation to the selling and marketing of drink, particularly the dangers that befall teenagers as a result of that”.
He added: “I also want to meet the drinks industry to look at what they are doing in relation to advertising and warning young people about the dangers of binge drinking and yes we will look, as councils are looking at, areas where young people are congregating in numbers to drink and see what can be done about that.”
Responding to the Prime Minister’s comments, Wine & Spirit Trade Association chief executive Jeremy Beadles said: “My understanding is that there will be one meeting with retailers and another with the advertising industry, and that it will be organised in the next few days. That’s all I know at the moment.”
Drinks marketing watchdog Portman Group and the British Retail Consortium, which represents shops and supermarkets, both said they had not received notification of any such meeting. A BRC spokesman said: “We believe that this meeting is being called but certainly the BRC hasn’t yet been invited to the meeting, and we are not aware that any individual retailers have been either.”