Blog: Olly WehringThe best of British to you, drinks bods

Olly Wehring | 16 April 2007

As you are no doubt well aware, I’m as keen to pick on the drinks industry as I am to side with it - call it tough love, if you like, but when you guys do something daft, we call you on it. At the same time, if you folks are having it tough, then you know we’ll be right behind you in the last garrison.

You’ll probably know within the first sentence where I sit on this one.

Over the weekend, the Institute for Public Policy Research has called for the raising of the legal drinking age from 18 to 21. The think-tank believes that, if the step were made, “it is at least possible that those in their early- and mid-teens will not see drink as something they will soon be allowed to do, so, therefore, they might as well start doing it surreptitiously now".

That such a blunt instrument is being proposed and aired in the public domain worries me. At times I wonder how those charged with defending the drinks industry from such draconian measures that seek to cast it as the devil incarnate have any hair left.

Such a move would be like trying to uninvent the wheel and completely underestimates the complexity of the issue of alcohol harm.

What this latest propsal once again demonstrates is the need for the drinks industry to stand united by pro-actively seeking to engage all parties in this debate in the hunt for a reasoned and workable solution, that avoids the sort of clichéd drumbeating we have seen here.


BLOG

The brutal truth behind India's temperance movement

Some people in India believe alcohol should be more difficult to purchase. Last month, the state of Bihar halted all alcohol sales as its chief minister made good on an election promise. ...

BLOG

How to test Heineken's sense of humour

Greetings from Zurich. Here as a guest of Heineken's Amstel brand, I'm due to sit down later today with the group's senior global director for international brands, Walter Drenth....

BLOG

Which spirits category is the next big thing?

Drinks companies spend a lot of money on trying to predict trends. At last night's Worshipful Company of Distillers City debate, any strategists in the audience got a bit of forecasting for free....

BLOG

Aperol Spritz - Just the one. A large one?

I'll admit to being partial to an Aperol Spritz now and again, more usually in the summer months, sitting outside, shades on, slowly turning more golden/rusty....

just-drinks homepage



Forgot your password?