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Campus is no place for a brewery, says Nandor

Campus is no place for a brewery, says Nandor

The finding by the Alcohol Advisory Council that drinking is more important than studying for New Zealand students is no surprise, given the domination of university orientation events by alcohol promotion.

“Beer brands have taken control of student orientation events and saturated them with advertising images and messages encouraging excessive drinking,” said Nandor, the Green Party’s spokesperson for Tertiary Education.

“It’s easy to dismiss the findings as heavy drinking has always been part of tertiary life but there’s been a concerted effort by breweries to market themselves on-campus as the ‘beer of choice’ for student piss-ups.

“Part of the pay-back for cash to put on student events is exclusive rights to sell product which limits the availability of non-alcoholic drinks.

“Advertising to the student market focuses on getting wasted. It’s no wonder that the advertised image becomes the reality for student parties.

“Targeting young people with alcohol advertising is against the law but its enforcement is completely inadequate. My private member’s bill would ban the broadcasting of liquor advertisements,” he said.

Nandor said that orientation organisers would find it hard to replace the ‘easy money’ that alcohol companies are prepared to throw at student events, but some balance is needed.

“Orientation events are very important to student life but the organisers should think very carefully about the impact of allowing beer marketers to dominate their events,” he said.

“Organisers should seriously consider the amount of liquor branding allowed for these events, require the advertising to be responsible and ensure there are plenty of non-alcoholic alternatives available.

“For some students this sounds as attractive as warm beer on a hot day but the level of beer marketing does students no favours when the rest of New Zealand begins to wonder where student loans and allowances are being spent,” he said.

Nandor and fellow Green MP Sue Kedgley will launch a comprehensive policy this Wednesday for alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.

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