Ireland, UK Efforts to Ban Alcohol Sport Sponsorship Continue

January 10, 2015

Everton shirt with Chang sponsorship. The club have been sponsored by the Thai
beer producer for over 10 years. Source:
Photograph: Shaun Boggust/ Shaun Boggust/Colorsport/Corbis
Doctors and public health advocates in the United Kingdom and Ireland are calling for a ban on alcohol sports sponsorships, with concerns that they encourage youth drinking and normalize the association of drinking with sport spectatorship.

England and Ireland join a growing chorus of public health experts in the European Union, New Zealand and Australia who have called for similar alcohol advertising restrictions in sporting events and broadcasts to protect youth from overexposure to alcohol marketing. Reports have indicated that sport sponsorship increases problem drinking in athletes, overexposes youth to alcohol advertising on television, and that youth were bombarded with alcohol advertising during the World Cup.

Restrictions on alcohol advertising in sports should be part of a larger policy to protect youth, including elimination of self-regulation of advertising by the alcohol industry, which allows overexposure of alcohol advertising to youth and provides no effective enforcement for code violations.