BELGIUM: Euro Commissioner trashes warning labels

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The European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development has voiced her concerns over proposals to introduce warning labels on all alcoholic drinks in the region.

Speaking at a conference organised by the European Spirits Organisation, CEPS, in Brussels yesterday (28 November), Mariann Fischer Boel noted that a number of EU member states have asked that all alcoholic drinks should be labelled with warnings about the potential harm the product could have on pregnant women, minors and drivers.

"I think that warning labels are not the most appropriate way to do it," Fischer Boel said. "I am not sure of the effects of this. I think there are much more efficient ways to try to educate consumers."

Fischer Boel said she believed that "parents have a responsibility for their children. This should be a discussion to be had among families." The role of schools in educating children about the dangers of alcohol was something Fischer Boel said she would "not water down".

"There are various ways of doing it," Fischer Boel concluded, "but we are discussing this issue."

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