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SABMiller takes action on alcohol abuse in South Africa

24 June 2010

SAB Ltd, the South African subsidiary of world leading brewer SABMiller, is addressing alcohol abuse in the country with a wide-ranging innovative programme which addresses drinking and driving, Foetal Alcohol Syndrome, responsible trading and underage drinking - issues identified as needing action beyond communication and education.

SAB Ltd has invested nearly a million US dollars to set up seven Alcohol Evidence Centres (AECs) across the country in partnership with local and provincial law enforcement agencies. Located in the major centres around the country, the AECs have sophisticated equipment which can accurately detect a driver's breath alcohol level and help to increase the prosecution rates of those arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. A further eight centres are in the pipeline with a view to covering the most of the major South African centres before the end of 2010.

In the first month of its operation, the Soweto AEC tested 302 drivers who were suspected of drink-driving and found 211 to be over the legal drink-drive limit. In Cape Town, 473 drivers were tested and 401 were found to be over the limit in its first month.

The alcohol strategy supports a new commercial code of good practice for working with trade partners and consumers to encourage more responsible trading practices such as not selling to minors. This builds on SAB's commitment to remove billboard advertising from areas of high alcohol abuse.

To address the high incidence of Foetal Alcohol Syndrome in South Africa SAB has built on existing work in partnership with FASFacts, an organisation which campaigns to decrease the prevalence of Foetal Alcohol Syndrome. This partnership specifically focuses on expanding the FASfacts operations from the Western Cape into the Northern Cape (the area hardest hit by FAS).

Finally, in support of the alcohol strategy, SAB has launched a hard-hitting advertising campaign called Reality Check to raise awareness of the anti-social and potentially life-threatening effects of drinking and driving and Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.


SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers with brewing interests and distribution agreements across six continents. The group's wide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch, as well as leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow and Tyskie. SABMiller is also one of the world's largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products.

In the year ended 31 March 2010, the group reported US$3,803 million adjusted pre-tax profit and group revenue of US$26,350 million. SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

Ten Priorities. One Future.   Through our Ten Priorities for sustainable development, SABMiller will make a difference both locally and globally to enhance the One Future that we all share. A robust approach to sustainable development underpins our ability to grow and our licence to operate. Furthermore, a well-managed, growing business is good for wider economic development, leading to greater employment and investment in local economies and communities.   


Bianca Shevlin
Corporate media relations manager
SABMiller plc
t: +44 20 7659 0172

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