New Scottish alcohol sponsorship guidelines decided

New drinks sponsorship guidelines have been announced by The Scottish Government and the Alcohol Industry Partnership in a bid to ensure that young people are not targeted.

The new guidelines have been put in place to identify best practice for alcohol brand sponsorships in Scotland.

The agreement has seen distillers, brewers and alcohol retailers confirm to abide to include activities or events to promote responsible drinking in any new commercial sponsorship, ensure alcohol brands are not used to sponsor teams, brands, celebrities or events with particular appeal to under 18s, nor sponsor individuals under 18.

They will also carry responsible drinking messages on all point of sale communications and conduct sampling activities at sponsored events in a responsible manner.

The Scottish Government and the Alcohol Industry Partnership was formed in February 2007 in order to bring together representatives from government and the major drinks firms to tackle alcohol related harm and promote responsible drinking, retailing, advertising and promotion.

Building on current self-regulatory mechanisms, the new guidelines go beyond The Portman Group Code of Practice on the Naming, Packaging, and Promotion of Alcoholic Drinks. The Scottish Government and industry partners are developing a joint mechanism to monitor and enforce the implementation of the sponsorship principles.

Alcohol misuse is estimated to cost Scotland at least £2.25 billion every year in costs to the NHS, police, courts, social services and impact on the wider economy.

George Kyle, head of sponsorship at Inbev UK said: "Tennent's has maintained a role at the heart of Scottish football and music for the past 30 years and we are committed to promoting responsible drinking across the country in all of our activities.

"As a founding member of the Scottish Government and Alcohol Industry Partnership, Tennent's recognises its responsibilities and welcomes the new commercial sponsorship guidelines which reflect our own high standards as Scotland's number one alcohol brand.

"The launch of the new guidelines will further enhance Tennent's promotion of responsible alcohol consumption in all of our commitments including T in the Park and the Scotland National side."

Gavin Hewitt, chief executive of The Scotch Whisky Association, commented: "Scotch Whisky distillers are proud to make an important contribution to Scottish life through support of a wide range of local and national cultural and sporting events, including major initiatives such as Homecoming Scotland.

"We believe such activities can be used to extend the industry's commitment to tackling alcohol misuse. We welcome the new guidelines, which are in line with the commitment of distillers to uphold the highest standards of social and corporate responsibility in all their activities."

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