In the UK today, like in many countries around the world, there is an important and lively debate among politicians, the media, and representatives of civil society about reducing harmful drinking. These debates have partly been stimulated by the World Health Organization (WHO). Next year, the WHO’s decision-making body will agree on a global strategy to reduce harmful drinking. As the WHO and the Ministries of Health around the world prepare to reach consensus on a global strategy to reduce the harmful use of alcohol, the International Center for Alcohol Policies (www.icap.org) book Working Together to Reduce Harmful Drinking gives a unique insight into top alcohol producers’ submissions to the global alcohol strategy process. The book is a material answer to the drinks industry’s critics that, “Industry should be involved if industry has something to contribute, just as any other stake¬holder in the alcohol field”.
The book demonstrates that alcohol producers do not shy away from tackling the thorny problems of alcohol advertising bans and increasing pricing, sheds light on the little known challenges presented by nearly 1/3rd of all alcohol consumed being noncommercial or illegal, and outlines areas for possible future involvement of the alcohol producers.
Working Together to Reduce Harmful Drinking endorses a balanced approach to alcohol policy that involves stakeholders coming together to produce workable strategies, including governments, law enforcement, public health organizations, communities, and the industry. At this crucial stage, industry underlines the importance of the WHO process, as nobody wants the WHO process to result in bad regulation and ineffective implementation, least of all the alcohol producers.
SPEAKERS: Marcus Grant, co-editor of the book and President of the International Center for Alcohol Policies (ICAP), a think tank promoting the understanding of the role of alcohol in society, will be joined by Paul Walsh, CEO Diageo, and Graham Mackay, CEO SABMiller, to talk about the wide-ranging international debate on alcohol policy and how it can best be implemented.
DATE: Thursday, 26 November 2009
TIME: PRESS CONFERENCE – 10h15 to 11h00
• 11h00 to 11h30 – Meet the book’s authors
o Mark Leverton, the book’s co-editor, Senior Advisor on Alcohol Policy to Diageo, UK
o Godfrey Robson, contributing author, chapter “Pricing of Beverage Alcohol”; former Head of Economic and Industrial Affairs for Scotland and former Director of Health Policy in the Scottish Government, UK
o Adrian Botha, contributing author, chapter “Understanding Alcohol Availability: Noncommercial Beverages”; Executive Director, Industry Association for Responsible Alcohol Use (ARA), South Africa
o Brett Bivans, contributing author, chapter “Working Together”; Vice President, ICAP, specialist in public-private partnerships and corporate social responsibility.
• 11h30 to 14h00 – Book launch event (see the invitation attached)
LOCATION: 31 Level, Paramount Club, Centre Point, 103 New Oxford Street, London WC1
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1519 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036 USA
Tel: +1 202.986.1159
Fax: +1 202.986.2080
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