Appeals to withdraw a television advertisement highlighting the link between alcohol and cancer have been rejected by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) today.

The ASA received several formal complaints – including one from the British Beer and Pub Association – claiming that the advert was misleading to viewers and irresponsible in its depiction of the association between alcohol and cancer.

In its defence, Balance North East outlined the existing, peer reviewed research on the links between alcohol and cancer, and also stressed that it had worked closely with medical experts during the development of the advertising campaign to ensure the messaging was accurate and in no way misleading or alarmist.

The independent regulator ruled in Balance’s favour, stating that the advertisement was not in breach of the UK code of broadcast advertising (BCAP).

Colin Shevills, Director of Balance, the North East Alcohol Office, said: “We are delighted at the ASA’s decision – this is a real victory for the health community. Sections of the alcohol industry have tried to prevent us providing health messages to the public which is highly irresponsible. It also shows an industry that is putting profits before health and wellbeing – similar tactics to those that were employed by the tobacco industry.”

You can view the campaign film below, or at Click on the link ‘No ban for TV ad showing link between alcohol and cancer’ for the full story.