Health lobby shuns drinks industry pledges

14 March, 2011

Six organisations representing the health lobby on alcohol issues have confirmed that they have refused to sign up to a series of proposed pledges to be made by drinks retailers and suppliers arising form the government’s responsibility deal.

The bodies had previously agreed to take part in the responsibility deal discussions but say they have “serious reservations” about the pledges, due to be published tomorrow.

A joint statement was issued by Alcohol Concern, the British Association for the Study of the Liver, British Liver Trust, British Medical Association, Institute of Alcohol Studies and the Royal College of Physicians.

Among the reservations outlined in the statement are that the pledges “are not specific or measurable and do not state what would be evidence of success” and that they have “prioritised industry views and not considered alternative pledges put forward by the health community”.

The six organisations’ alternative proposals include a voluntary ban on advertising based on price and health warnings on packs.

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