Authors: Daniela Pantani, Raquel Peltzer, Mariana Cremonte, Katherine Robaina, Thomas Babor and Ilana Pinsky Title: The marketing potential of corporate social responsibilityactivities: the case of the alcohol industry in LatinAmerica and the Caribbean Journal: Addiction, 10 January 2017, DOI: 10.1111/add.13616 Abstract: Aims: The aims were to: (1) identify, monitor and analyse the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) practices Read More →

In recent years the Dutch government gave  a € 6.6 million grant to Heineken for so-called development aid in Africa. Prime Minister Rutte praised Heineken in September 2015 during a speech to the UN, because of the purchase of beer barley from local farmers in Africa.

Research journalists of the Dutch television-program Zembla studied the impact of the € 1.3 million grant Heineken received from the Dutch government for the acquisition of two state breweries in Ethiopia.

Who benefited? The advantage for Heineken is obvious: net sales rose sharply and the company now controls 30% of the Ethiopian beer market. But that does not apply to the Ethiopian government: Heineken currently pays - despite increased sales - less income tax than before the acquisition in 2011. In addition, Heineken also paid much less wage tax. That's because since the acquisition of the two breweries, 699 Ethiopians were fired by Heineken.

The impact on poverty in the country and on the beer barley farmers who participate is unclear. The latter have a higher yield and a better price, but may only supply the breweries of Heineken. An expert of the IMF judges the results of the Dutch policy as a lose-lose-win situation. A loss for the Ethiopian treasury, a loss for the personnel of the breweries and a win for Heineken.

Source: Zembla.vara.nl via our colleagues at STAP the Dutch Institute for Alcohol Policy.

A new systematic literature review on how the alcohol industry attempts to influence marketing regulations, concludes that the alcohol industry’s political activity is more varied than previously thought. According to the research there are considerable commonalities between tobacco and alcohol industry political activity. Data extraction from seventeen papers showed that the alcohol industry’s opposition to Read More →

Authors: Sarah Mart, Norman Giesbrecht Title: Red flags on pinkwashed drinks: contradictions and dangers in marketing alcohol to prevent cancer Journal: Addiction, Volume 110, Issue 10 October 2015 Pages 1541–1548. Abstract Aims To document alcohol products and promotions that use the pink ribbon symbol and related marketing materials that associate alcohol brands with breast cancer charities, awareness and survivors. Read More →

With tightening regulations on alcohol marketing, alcohol producers develop new initiatives to make customers aware of their brands and products. One such recent development is the use of Corporate Social Responsibility to build on the image of the companies. This boiles down to alcohol producers claiming to take responsibility in informing customers about responsible drinking Read More →