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Science Factsheets

Alcohol and underage drinking

 

Underage drinking and harmful drinking patterns amongst children and adolescents are a significant problem in a number of European countries.  Curbing such trends is a priority for all stakeholders, including governments, public health specialists and the industry.  This document aims to provide an effective toolkit to address questions surrounding underage drinking (young people are defined here as being under the legal purchase age).

  

Alcohol advertising and consumption

 

Advertising for alcoholic beverages is regularly under government scrutiny.  Regulating and reducing the visibility of alcoholic beverages is seen as a convincing public health policy measure to reduce alcohol-related harm.  This document aims to provide an effective toolkit to address questions surrounding alcohol advertising and its effects on consumption.

 

Alcohol taxation, pricing and alcohol-related harm

 

Most governments levy taxes and excise duties on alcoholic beverages in order to generate revenues.  But taxation and pricing policies have also been used as public health tools to influence alcohol consumption, and reduce alcohol-related harm.  This document provides a series of facts and data challenging the effectiveness of taxation as a public health tool, and disputing four public policy myths.

 

Meaningful consumer information about alcohol

 

Health Warning Labels began to gain popularity amongst policy makers in the US in the 1980s, when local and state legislation pushed for mandatory labelling in an effort to reduce alcohol-related harm.  Warnings generally address targeted audiences or contexts: pregnancy, drink driving or operating machinery.  This document aims to address questions surrounding consumer information about alcohol (including, but not limited to, Alcohol Health Warnings).

 

Drink-Driving

 

Drink-driving – driving with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is a risky behaviour that can harm not only the drink-driver but also third parties, and thus impact society at large. Combined efforts by industry, public authorities, and citizens have successfully led to growing awareness of the risks linked to drinking under the influence of alcohol.  As a result, the number of drink driving accidents and fatalities has decreased in many EU countries over the past 10 years. However, efforts should be sustained to educate people about the dangers of drink driving in order to further reduce alcohol-related traffic accidents linked to such behaviour. The factshee aims to provide an effective toolkit to address questions on drink-driving.