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Brewers support Alcohol Reform Bill

MEDIA RELEASE - 12 December 2012

Brewers support Alcohol Reform Bill’s push towards moderate and sociable consumption

The passing of the Alcohol Reform Bill marks another milestone in New Zealand’s alcohol policy development, and the Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand is cautiously optimistic that it will help support New Zealanders to enjoy alcohol more responsibly.

Jenny Cameron, Director of External Relations for the Brewers Association in New Zealand, says the Association has supported the objectives of this new legislation throughout the parliamentary process.

“The beer industry is committed to working with central and local government to minimise the harm caused from inappropriate or excessive use of alcohol, and to ensure the sale, supply and consumption of alcoholic products is safe and responsible”, says Ms Cameron.

The Brewers Association believes that the Government has taken a pragmatic approach towards finding a solution to reduce the harmful use of alcohol by a minority of New Zealanders, but still allowing for an economically important hospitality sector that includes a dynamic and vibrant beer category.

“We know that regulation alone will not solve the issue of alcohol misuse, it requires cultural change, and therefore the Brewers Association is committed on an ongoing basis to supporting moderate and responsible consumption”, says Ms Cameron.

Brewers Association members already take a number of steps to promote and support the responsible drinking message. This includes the moderation message being part of both the Heineken and Speight’s upcoming summer advertising campaigns. The Association is also a major supporter of the recently-launched “Cheers!” campaign (www.cheers.org.nz) as part of the Tomorrow Project, a social change initiative by the beer, wine and spirits associations supporting moderate consumption as part of a healthy lifestyle.
The Association also believes that discussion around the Alcohol Reform Bill, from the time of the Law Commission report in 2010 through to when the regulations come into place in 2013, has provided an opportunity for New Zealanders to review their attitude to, and relationship with, alcohol and to also consider what measures are appropriate to encourage sociable, moderate drinking.

“The Brewers Association supports targeted measures that will make a real difference, coupled with the right education and information for people to make informed choices for themselves, their families, and their communities in reducing alcohol misuse”, concludes Ms Cameron.
Notes to Editors
1. The Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand represents Australia and New Zealand’s major manufacturing breweries on regulatory issues and broader public policy issues. www.brewers.org.nz

2. ‘Cheers!’ is a social change initiative by beer, wine and spirit producers as part of The Tomorrow Project. The Tomorrow Project operates a public education programme to give New Zealanders the information they need to make good decisions about the way they drink www.cheers.org.nz

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