The Church of Ireland has called for a ban on FAB advertising, according to press reports. The Irish Times said yesterday (31 January) that the church has called on the drinks industry to monitor what and how much young people drink, and suggested parents show greater interest in what their children are doing outside the home.

Launching the church's "Alcohol in the Life of Young People" document in Dublin, its primate Archbishop Robin Eames told the Irish Times: "In the Republic ,there has been a 370% increase in levels of intoxication in public places by underage drinkers since 1996".

"60% of boys and 54% of girls aged between 15 and 17 years of age admit to having been 'really drunk'," he continued. "One in five cases of emergency admissions to Irish hospitals are alcohol related.

"In Northern Ireland the statistics are just as dramatic. Almost 80% of teenagers surveyed claim to have consumed alcohol by the age of 16."

Describing the Alcohol in the Life of Young People document as "one of the most important church reports on young people for some time" he welcomed it as "a serious and balanced study" while emphasising it was "not age preaching to youth."

Alcohol was "an issue for the whole of society and, as well as looking at how we can educate young people about the effects of over-indulgence in alcohol, this report looks at how people in other countries are tackling the same issues," he said.