The alcohol industry has reacted with disappointment at the failure of The World Health Assembly (WHA) to reach a consensus on a resolution on alcohol.

The WHA, which finished yesterday (23 May), said: "The Assembly held lengthy discussions on public-health problems caused by the harmful use of alcohol. Delegates agreed that the issue will be discussed again at the WHO Executive Board in January, 2008."

However, the The Global Alcohol Producers Group (GAP Group), representing 17 of the world's leading international, beer, wine and spirits companies, said it "believes that the inability of the WHO member states to agree on a way forward to address the health problems associated with alcohol misuse is disappointing."

A statement from group continued: "The postponement of a decision by the WHA does not dampen GAP Group's commitment to working with WHO in reducing irresponsible and inappropriate consumption. Experience demonstrates that it is necessary to involve all stakeholders to effectively tackle alcohol related harm.

"The GAP Group companies promote partnership initiatives to curb drink driving, illegal underage and excessive drinking; the companies also promote alcohol education, conduct responsible drinking campaigns and share best practice in self-regulation of advertising."