The Brewers of Europe’s Second Year Report on the European Beer Pledge shows Europe’s brewers’ are keeping to their promise to promote the responsible consumption of beer, increase consumer knowledge and strengthen responsible beer advertising.
“This report shows how brewers across Europe have persisted in their efforts to step up in support of the EU Strategy to reduce alcohol-related harm, through concrete actions targeted at combating alcohol misuse,” said Pierre-Oliver Bergeron, Secretary General of The Brewers of Europe.
“The current EU Strategy sets the right priorities and, whilst it may need reinvigorating, we call on the EU to persevere with its current strategy of tackling harm by addressing alcohol misuse, encouraging all relevant parties to take their responsibilities and focusing on those most vulnerable, through concrete, targeted actions.”
The European Beer Pledge is a voluntary initiative by Europe’s brewers to support EU Member States in reducing alcohol related harm. Brewers made a commitment in the European Parliament and to the EU’s Alcohol and Health Forum, to take concerted and measurable action to improve consumer information, ensure responsible advertising and address alcohol misuse in line with the expectations of citizens and EU policymakers.
Focusing on the new activities carried out between March 2013 and May 2014, this second interim report presents a snapshot of initiatives by brewers across Europe, through associations, by companies and in broad coalitions, in line with and contributing to the implementation of the European Beer Pledge.
“The report, and the actions described therein, demonstrates the positive and large-scale voluntary actions that brewers can take, and are taking, to address alcohol misuse,” said Bergeron.
The reporting period saw the brewing sector stepping up its activities, numerically, geographically, and in scope, with local partners including governments, driving schools, local authorities, doctors’ groups, consumer organisations, NGOs and police authorities. At EU-level The Brewers of Europe also continued its partnership with the EU-wide road safety NGO, the European Transport Safety Council.
“Voluntary commitments implemented at grassroots level, in support of an overall EU strategy, provide the necessary flexibility that is lacking in top-down, pan-European measures,” continued Mr Bergeron. “In some cases the activity can be best implemented by an individual company, whilst in others it is more logical to implement it as part of a broad coalition.”
The Brewers of Europe is looking to further build on its activities in 2015 and beyond, with a particular focus on empowering consumers with the right information to make informed choices, and campaigns that actively promote moderate beer consumption and its place within a balanced lifestyle. Ensuring that marketing self-regulation mechanisms remain equipped to deal with new media will also be a key priority.
With an EU Strategy that remains targeted at alcohol misuse and recognises the contributions that all parties can make, the European Commission can depend on the support of Europe’s brewers, at EU and local level, through focused actions in partnership with other key stakeholders.
The report can be downloaded here.