Industry voluntary code “Not fit for purpose”

A report
commissioned by the government has found that self-regulation of the
alcohol industry is failing to uphold voluntarily-agreed standards. “In
the current trading climate the commercial imperative generally
overrides adherence” to the code, it says.

The study,
conducted by KPMG, was commissioned by the government to evaluate the
current policy of self-regulation of promotional activities, overseen by
the Portman Group. In the recent Youth Alcohol Action Plan, the
government raised the possibility that the regulatory standards will be
made mandatory. In response, David Poley, Chief Executive of the Portman
Group, said, “The promotional activities of drinks producers are
strictly controlled with mandatory rules that apply to all companies.
There would be no justification for interfering with drinks producer
self-regulation.” KPMG’s investigation has found otherwise.