Brussels, 11 March 2014: Following the adoption last night of a Resolution on the EU Alcohol Strategy by the European Parliament’s Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, The Brewers of Europe reiterates the Brewers’ commitment to action against alcohol-related harm.
“The Parliament’s Resolution on the EU Alcohol Strategy rightly highlights the need to tackle alcohol misuse, including underage and binge drinking, as well as drink-driving and drinking during pregnancy,” said Pierre Olivier Bergeron, Secretary General of The Brewers of Europe. “If we are to ensure safe and sensible drinking in Europe, interactive dialogue, strong partnerships, and above all definitive, targeted and collective action are vital.”
The Brewers believe that targeted actions against alcohol misuse are a prerequisite for achieving the objectives of the EU Strategy to support Member States in reducing alcohol-related harm. Although alcohol consumption has declined during the economic crisis, significant alcohol misuse-related problems still remain. The Brewers believe that this merely reinforces the need for the prime focus to be enforcement of existing legislation and targeted, local-level activities aimed at the minority who misuse alcohol, rather than introducing new, top-down, overall consumption-focused measures from afar.
The Brewers are fully engaged in initiatives targeted at alcohol misuse through major commitments, such as the EU Beer Pledge, marketing self-regulation, the SMART project aimed at reducing drink driving, launched in collaboration with the EU-wide NGO the European Transport Safety Council, and the European Alcohol & Health Forum, and are also involved in a multitude of local partnerships.
“The Brewers welcome the Parliament’s call for the Commission to consult relevant stakeholders such as the Forum, where the Brewers are responsible for over 100 of the 250 commitments put forward to date,” said Mr Bergeron.
“Given our active involvement in the Forum, it should come as no surprise that the Brewers support MEPs in their call to encourage all alcohol stakeholders to participate in the Forum and thereby enable it to develop effective actions to reduce alcohol-related harm.”
The Brewers remain supportive of the current EU Strategy, which gives a key role to the European Union in steering national and local discussions via the sharing of best practices, data and evidence.
Bergeron concluded: “In all of our efforts to tackle alcohol misuse we should not lose sight of the fact that beer is a social drink that, when consumed in moderation – as is done by the vast majority – can form part of an adult’s balanced and healthy lifestyle. Indeed the Resolution recognises this fact and as Brewers we are committed to the ongoing promotion of responsible beer consumption.”
Simon Spillane, Communications Senior Advisor, The Brewers of Europe
+32 (0)2 551 1810; email@example.com
Founded in 1958 and based in Brussels, The Brewers of Europe unites the national brewers’ associations from 29 European countries