According to Russian RMAA Group, the prohibition on any advertising for beer has been eased because of the upcoming Football World Cup Championship in 2018. Did the FIFA exert such pressure that alcohol marketing is relaxed for 3 years – as part of the agreement with sponsors? In 2018, the Football World Cup will be organised in Russia. According to the Russian RMAA Group, the prohibition on any advertising for beer on radio, TV, printed media and online has been eased until the end of 2018 because of the upcoming Football World Cup. Chris Brookes, Director of the UK Health Forum states that "It is inappropriate that FIFA can demand that countries relax rules which protect their citizens and in particular children from the harm caused by alcohol." The FIFA has taken a very strong position regarding alcohol during World Cups. As stated by Jerome Valcke (FIFA’s secretary) in 2012: “Alcoholic drinks are part of the FIFA World Cup, so we’re going to have them. Excuse me if I sound a bit arrogant but that’s something we won’t negotiate,”  as FIFA campaigned against the ban in Brazil. “The fact that we have the right to sell beer has to be a part of the law.” Furthermore, “umbrella branding" is promoted by the RMAA Group, in order to avoid the advertising limitations that are still in place (e.g. not depicting human or animal characters). However, advertising non-alcoholic beer can have a large impact on establishing the alcoholic brand as such, because the same brand name is used for promoting non-alcohol and alcoholic products.     
  NGOs  issue complaint to French government: Carlsberg and UEFA are deliberately circumventing French law during EURO 2016 and in doing so they are exposing alcohol ads to millions of children. Aggressive alcohol marketing reaches 1.9 billion people Carlsberg is one of ten official sponsors of the month-long UEFA EURO 2016, the quadrennial men's football championship of Europe organized by The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA). EURO 2012 drew a cumulative audience of over 1.9 billion people[1] and is one of the world’s most popular sporting events. Civil society organizations have been tracking the alcohol marketing activities of Carlsberg over the course of the EUROs. “We are not surprised but extremely concerned. Carlsberg and UEFA have engaged in aggressive alcohol promotions throughout the whole tournament. Carlsberg is visible nearly every minute during broadcasts of the EURO 2016 games,” says Kristina Sperkova, President of IOGT International. French law bypassed "It is unacceptable to see that this is going on, when alcohol advertising in sports is actually banned by law in France,” says Wim van Dalen, President of the European Centre for Monitoring Alcohol Marketing (EUCAM). The ‘Loi Evin’, as the French alcohol marketing regulation is known, bans any link between alcohol marketing and sports as well as between alcohol marketing and youth[2]. Carlsberg and UEFA are apparently able to circumvent this by replacing the brand name on pitch-side adverts with one of their iconic slogans, written in the easily-recognizable Carlsberg font. Alcohol ads seen almost once per minute New research carried out by Alcohol Concern during the group stages of EURO 2016 has found that people watching England’s and Wales’ games saw alcohol marketing almost once a minute during play. It shows that during TV broadcasts of the two countries’ group games, pitch-side adverts for Carlsberg appeared 392 times – an average of 78.4 per game, or once every 72 seconds[3]. More than 50 unethical practices found Additionally, the campaign Big Alcohol Exposed has collected more than 50 case examples[4] of unethical practices by Carlsberg and UEFA. The cases include: -Pervasive in game, pitch-side ads
  • Pre- and after-game ads during interviews and press conferences
  • Merchandise for fans
  • Associations with special moments of each game like best goal and man of the match
  • The UEFA EURO 2016 smartphone app
  • Social media (Twitter) activities by Carlsberg and UEFA.
Brand-specific ads increase under-age alcohol use Research shows that exposure to brand-specific alcohol ads is a significant predictor of under-age alcohol use, with youth ages 13 to 20 being more than 5 times more likely to consume brands that advertise on national TV[5]. Particularly concerning is the fact that earlier this year a systematic literature study found a positive association between exposure to alcohol sports sponsorship and increased alcohol consumption amongst adult sportspeople and schoolchildren [6]. ”The volume of alcohol marketing in sport, especially in football, which is popular with children and youth, is enormous,” explained Tom Smith, Director of Campaigns at Alcohol Concern. ”We already know from our previous research that half of UK children associate leading beer brands with football. Sport should be something which inspires active participation and good health, not more and earlier alcohol use.” NGO’s call upon French government and European Commission "The EURO 2016 is another example for the need to hold Carlsberg and the alcohol industry accountable for circumventing French law,” urges Wim van Dalen. “That is why wewill this week file an official complaint to the French government and are calling on the European Commission to do more to protect children and youth from alcohol marketing.”  


  Notes for the editors: UEFA – Carslberg sponsorship deal For UEFA, the sponsorship deal with the world’s 4th largest beer producer [7] is highly lucrative. Carlsberg is said to have paid about €40 million to be exclusive beer sponsor of EURO 2016. But the Danish brewer is spending even more for promoting its brand during the tournament: Carlsberg is investing as much as €80 million on marketing for the championship [8]. The French alcohol marketing regulation The ‘Loi Evin’, as the French alcohol marketing regulation is known, bans any link between alcohol marketing and sports as well as between alcohol marketing and youth [9].
  • No advertising should be targeted at young people;
  • No advertising is allowed on television or in cinemas;
  • No sponsorship of cultural or sport events is permitted.
  • Advertising in the form of product information is allowed.
[1] Can EURO 2016 and Copa America Centenario capture an international audience? [2] Regaud, A., Craplet, M., in The Globe, 2004: The ’Loi Evin’: a French exemption [3] Alcohol Concern, 2016: Children see alcohol ads every 72 seconds during EURO 2016 [4] Big Alcohol Exposed, 2016: Unethical marketing practices during EURO 2016 [5] Siegel, M.,, in: American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 2015: The relationship between exposure to brand-specific alcohol advertising and brand-specific consumption among underage drinkers – United States, 2011–2012 [6] Brown, K. (2016). Association between alcohol sports sponsorship and consumption: a systematic review. Alcohol and alcoholism, agw006. [7] Roach, D., in: Business Insider, 2014: 5 beer makers own more than half of global beer market [8] Panja, T.: in Bloomberg, 2016: Carlsberg’s Euro Soccer Campaign said to be worth $90 million [9] Regaud, A., Craplet, M., in The Globe, 2004: The ’Loi Evin’: a French exemption
irish-sportssponsorship A new systematic literature study by the Institute of Alcohol Studies (IAS) concludes that international studies found a significant link between sports sponsorship and increased alcohol consumption, including among schoolchildren. In Ireland this news has drawn attention back to earlier cancelled plans by the government to ban alcohol sports sponsorship. The study, authored by IAS director Kathrine Brown, was published in the journal Alcohol and Alcoholism. In it, Brown points out that the association between alcohol sports sponsorship and alcohol use among minors “warranted close attention from public health policymakers”. The research reviewed studies in seven countries, including five in the EU. “All studies report positive associations between exposure to alcohol sports sponsorship and self-reported alcohol consumption,” states the report. “Two studies found indirect exposure to alcohol sports sponsorship was associated with increased levels of drinking amongst schoolchildren, and five studies found a positive association between direct alcohol sports sponsorship and hazardous drinking amongst adult sports-people.” Among the studies included in the review is a study by EUCAMs Avalon de Bruijn from 2012. This Amphora study among 6,650 young students in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Poland found that “exposure to branded sports sponsorship increased the odds of drinking”. A 2009 study among 320 students from Welsh schools found that “awareness of alcohol sponsorship predicted likelihood of boys drinking and of both boys and girls getting drunk the following weekend”. The article notes that France and Norway already have a ban in place against alcohol branded sports sponsorship, while countries such as Ireland and New Zealand are considering this policy intervention. Ireland Irish newspaper the Irish Examiner picked up the publication of the article and said that: ‘Given the lack of Irish research on the matter, it will be of interest to health experts and departmental officials here.’ The Examiner describes the history of the ambitious plans to ban alcohol sports sponsorship and what ended up happening. It starts with referring to a report of the government’s National Substance Misuse Strategy Steering Group which in February 2012 recommended that alcohol sponsorship of sports events be phased out by 2016. This recommendation was strongly opposed by sporting organisations and the alcohol industry. Accordingly, a decision on the subject was postponed by the Government’s action plan on alcohol, which in October 2013 left the issue to a working group. This group in turn reported at the end of 2014 that evidence of the links between sponsorship and consumption was limited. The major sporting bodies argued that they would suffer a significant loss of revenue if sports sponsorship were to be banned. In reaction to this conflicting views came up on alternative sources of sponsorship and the work group said further work was needed to identify the options for Government. The issue of alcohol branded sports sponsorship is not covered in the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill 2015, which was published in December, other than prohibiting alcohol advertising in sports grounds for events where a majority of participants are children. The abstract of the systematic literature study can be found here>> The full text is available on the website of Alcohol and Alcoholism>> Source: Irish Examiner 03/01/16 For more information on the Irish debate about sports sponsorship also see: ALCOHOL ADS ON THE SIDE OF SPORTS FIELDS TO BE BANNED IN IRELAND? 11/08/15 VIDEO: DR. PAT KENNY DISCUSSING ALCOHOL MARKETING BEFORE THE OIREACHTAS 08/02/15 IRISH BAN ON ALCOHOL SPORTS SPONSORING TO BE DROPPED 01/25/15 TEENS PREFER ALCOHOL BRANDS THEY KNOW THROUGH SPONSORSHIP 12/16/14 EUCAM COMMENTARY IN UPCOMING ISSUE OF ADDICTION: REFUTING ARGUMENTS AGAINST A BAN ON ALCOHOL SPORT SPONSORSHIP 08/29/14 IRISH GOVERNMENT FINALIZES ALCOHOL STRATEGY: NO BAN ON SPORTS SPONSORSHIP 10/24/13 IRELAND: REVIEW COMMITTEE OPPOSES BAN ON ALCOHOL BRANDED SPORT SPONSORSHIP 07/08/13 IRISH MEDIA REPORT BAN ON ALCOHOL BRANDED SPORT SPONSORING WILL BE APPROVED 07/29/13 RESEARCH SHOWS THAT ALCOHOL MARKETING IS NOT HARMLESS 06/26/13 IRELAND: POLICY MAKERS NOT PREPARED TO DO WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE AGAINST ALCOHOL 03/16/13 FEATURE OF IRISH ALCOHOL STRATEGY UNCERTAIN AS MINISTER RESIGNS 10/01/12 MINISTER DEDICATED TO BANNING ALCOHOL SPORT SPONSORING IN IRELAND 05/25/12 IRELAND TO BAN ALCOHOL SPORTS SPONSORSHIP? 02/07/12 IRISH DEBATE ABOUT ALCOHOL MARKETING FLARES UP 11/201/11      
irish-sportssponsorship The proposed ban on alcohol branded sports sponsoring is expected to be dropped. Health Minister Leo Varadkar said a ban would be desirable, “but only if other sponsorship was found and if it was practical to do so.” Irish public broadcaster RTÉ reports that the plans are expected to be dropped following discussions between several Government Departments earlier this week ahead of a meeting that will examine proposed legislation on the issue. It was planned to incorporate the proposed ban in the Public Health Alcohol Bill which is due to be published later this year and will regulate the pricing and advertising of alcohol. According to The Irish Times the ban is supported by both the ministers of Health and Sport, but was vetoed by by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe and his junior minister, Michael Ring. Speaking on RTÉ, Health Minister Varadkar said new legislation aiming to reduce alcohol consumption is still a priority for his department. The issue of whether alcohol companies should be allowed to continue sponsoring sports is still being debated in Government, according to Varadkar. A Cabinet Sub-Committee is to discuss such a ban at a meeting on Monday the 26th of January. While it seems that the ban on alcohol branded sponsorship of sports and cultural events will not be realized, another proposal seems to be going through: The current system of voluntary rules around sports sponsorship will be given legal backing. Measures in the code of conduct which will be placed on a statutory footing include banning alcohol sponsorship of any individuals, teams or competitions where the participants are under 18; or where more than a quarter of their audience, either attending live events or watching on television, are under 18. The Irish debate about banning alcohol sponsorship has been dragging on since early 2012 when junior health minister Roisin Shortall dedicated herself to cutting the tie between sport and alcohol promotion. In October of that year Shortall resigned after clashing with other ministers, implying that decisions on health infrastructure and staffing are driven by other concerns then public health. In reaction to the news this week Miss Shortall said:
“At a time when the Chief Medical Officer, the Royal College of Surgeons and the World Health Organisation are calling for a ban it shows an incredible lack of political leadership not to support it.”
Source: RTE 01/24/15 Irish Times 01/24/15
Leading UK doctors are demanding a ban on alcohol firms sponsoring sports clubs and events because the “outrageous” practice is fuelling underage drinking. In a letter published in the Guardian on Boxing Day, the signatories state that alcohol sponsorship of sport has become “as commonplace as advertising for cereal or soap powder”. The letter is published on a day when millions of sports fans in the UK prepare to attend or watch on television a packed Boxing Day programme of football, racing and rugby, all of which feature alcohol brand sponsorships. The letter asks: “Shouldn’t our national sports be inspiring our children to lead healthy and positive lifestyles? It would be considered outrageous if high-profile teams like Everton or Celtic were to become brand ambassadors for tobacco, and so why is it acceptable for alcohol?” The undersigned additionally stressed that: “Importantly, evidence shows that exposure to alcohol advertising leads young people to drink more and to drink at an earlier age.” Among the letter’s signatories are Professor Sir Ian Gilmore, former president of the Royal College of Physicians and current chair of the Alcohol Health Alliance UK; Professor Jane Dacre, the current president of the Royal College of Physicians, which represents hospital doctors Professor Colin Drummond, chair of Addictions Faculty, Royal College of Psychiatrists; and Professor Gerard Hastings, of the University of Stirling. They want the government to intervene, and claim that public opinion supports introducing a ban on alcohol advertising of sport. “Let’s take action to protect our children by ensuring that the sports we watch promote healthy lifestyles and inspire participation, not a drinking culture. Let’s make alcohol sports sponsorship a thing of the past,” they say. The letter can be read on the Guardian website in its entirety>> Source: The Guardian 12/25/14
heineken-sports-2-big_2-1 The New Zealand Government has been advised to end alcohol sponsorship of sports clubs and ban any advertising of beer, wine and spirits during televised matches by a ministerial forum. The forum concluded after a two-year inquiry that the total cost of alcohol-related harm in New Zealand was "enough to justify further restrictions on alcohol advertising and sponsorship". Justice Minister Amy Adams and Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne issued a media release only last week, nearly two months after receiving a final report from their Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship. Rather than welcome the recommendations of the Ministerial Forum or even thank them for their hard work, Alcohol Action NZ accuses the ministers of political-delay-speak, suggesting the report “raises a number of questions…”, that the issues are “complex”, and that it is now “important to consult”. Professor Doug Sellman, medical spokesperson for Alcohol Action NZ said, “alarm bells should ring very loudly when an eagerly anticipated government sponsored report is made public either after Parliament rises for a recess, or just before a major national holiday such as Christmas. The timing of Adams and Dunn’s response ticks both boxes”. Professor Jennie Connor, another Alcohol Action NZ medical spokesperson, also expressed her concern at the media statement. She said “The statement gave a strong signal of feet-dragging delay from the government. Despite the on-going exposure of children in communities saturated with alcohol outlets and advertising, the Ministers are talking of starting some new investigations. They think “a thorough quantification of the implications” is necessary and they will “consult with organisations and community groups””. “We were given the clear impression that this Ministerial Forum, which had wide representation, had consulted with stakeholders and communities before making their recommendations” she said. Source: Alcohol Action NZ 12/18/14 The Report by the Ministerial Forum can be read here>> The reaction by Ministers Adams and Dunne can be read here>>