ABAC calls for more responsible packaging practices

Wednesday, 16 October, 2019

ABAC calls for more responsible packaging practices

The Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code (ABAC) has reported a notable increase in the number of complaints it has received about alcohol packaging over the last quarter. Packaging that has strong or evident appeal to minors is prohibited under the code.

“The desire of some manufacturers to be creative is understandable, but they must have regard to wrongfully appealing to minors. Yet again, this underscores the necessity for producers, especially the small players, to pre-vet their marketing with ABAC before going to market,” said ABAC Chair Harry Jenkins, AO.

Two of the seven breaches ABAC experienced this quarter related to alcohol packaging, while another packaging complaint was dismissed and a further seven complaints are awaiting decision. The ABAC Adjudication Panel found that the packaging of Jedi Juice by Hop Nation and Skinny Freezers appeals to minors; Hop Nation has agreed to discontinue orders for the Jedi Juice packaging, but the Australian distributors of Skinny Freezers have not responded to the panel’s decision yet. ABAC has passed on its concern about Skinny Freezers to the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation.

A Cellarbrations advertisement is also claimed to have breached the code, as the panel deemed it could lead a reasonable person to take the ad as encouraging excessive drinking. A Facebook post promoting a product at “8% which is double the standard drink of cruisers” also breached the code by using alcohol content as a selling point. In each of these cases, the marketing materials were removed in accordance with ABAC’s rulings.

ABAC is committed to educating the alcohol industry about responsible marketing practices and holds a free compliance training webinar every year. ABAC’s Third Quarterly Report for 2019 also provides further information about the code.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/volff

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