A Finnish group of retail lobbyists are trying to have advertising regulations relaxed in their sector. The retailers want the same regulations as pubs, clubs and restaurants. This would in effect mean the option for limited period promotions offering money off for those buying large quantities.


Finland based businesses in the hospitality industry are currently allowed to organize happy hours, where drinks are discounted for a short time. Short-term discounting is not permitted in shops. Thanks to a 2008 legislative change, stores must sell alcohol at the same price for at least two months, thus discouraging short-term offers. This also means that multipack discounts are illegal.

Not surprisingly, the Federation of the Brewing and Soft Drinks industry says that the industry would like the same rules for retailers as for bars. Also, store owners claim the change has not helped reduce consumption, as the individual can or bottle price has dropped accordingly.

However, Kari Kunnas of the National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health is worried about the regulations as they currently are for the hospitality industry. Finland’s alcohol marketing regulations prohibit pubs, bars and restaurant from advertising their promotions outdoors. As such, the marketing of happy hours is subject to strict regulations. For instance happy hours cannot be advertised using words like ‘eurodisco’, after-work’, or ‘after-dark’. According to Kunnas this does not stop businesses from breaching the law. He refers to pubs which post notices announcing the happy hours online, which is against the law.

Source: Yle.fi 01/11/13

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