National alcohol policies
Helping develop policies to reduce alcohol-related harm
In Africa, we’ve been working with governments, public health experts and non-government organisations to develop national alcohol policies to reduce alcohol-related harm.
Working in partnership to support public health
In March 2010, SABMiller and its UK subsidiary Miller Brands gave strong backing to the UK coalition government’s first Public Health Responsibility Deal (PHRD). The Deal is a significant initiative and represents a new approach from the Department of Health to get industry, NGOs, the public health community and government working together to address public health challenges.
As a signatory to the PHRD, we have committed to a series of pledges focused on tackling alcohol abuse and encouraging people to drink responsibly. We signed up to five core commitments relating to food, physical activity, alcohol, and health in the workplace.
The pledge on alcohol says: “We will foster a culture of responsible drinking, which will help people to drink within guidelines”.
We have also signed up to four of the “collective pledges” that relate to our business: clear labelling of our products, support for the charity Drinkaware, strengthening responsible marketing practices within the industry, and supporting local partnerships to address social and health harms.
Finally, we have made three individual pledges, which focus on helping consumers make informed choices about alcohol, providing support for the responsible retailing of alcohol and supporting research into effective ways of promoting a culture of responsible drinking. We will publish details of our progress against all these commitments, recognising, however, that making pledges is just one step on the journey to success.
Working with partners in Europe
SABMiller is a founding member of the EU Alcohol and Health Forum, a partnership between over 40 companies, NGOs, experts and public institutions whose purpose is to take action against alcohol-related harm.
Since 2007, we have undertaken 15 initiatives as part of this. This has included updating our training materials on self-regulation and commercial communication, training 4,000 European employees involved in marketing, sales, legal and corporate affairs, and translating our website TalkingAlcohol.com into non-English languages.
In the past year alone, we have expanded a text messaging programme in Slovakia in partnership with the Slovak Ministry of Transport and Prima, a Slovakian NGO, that by enabling mobile phone users to get information about their blood alcohol content, discourages drink driving; set up an online discussion forum in Italy to provide information on the effects of alcohol consumption; and launched a website in Romania called ‘Find Your Balance!’ to deliver educational alcohol messages through online debates and live events. We are currently working to include responsibility reminders on our packaging labels and in our commercial communications by December 2011.
In November 2010 SABMiller spoke about its commitments to the forum members. Download the brochure PDF (1.38Mb) we presented on our consumer communication in Europe; it is now included in the European Commission’s Alcohol Library.