Debate: Should alcohol advertising be banned?

The Department of Health is pushing for a ban on alcohol advertising through the controversial Liquor Amendment Bill.

If the bill is passed, alcohol advertising on radio and television will be banned from 6am to 10pm and the age limit for drinking will be raised from 18 to 21 years.

Gugulethu Mhlungu, standing in for Stephen Grootes, spoke to Lebohang Letsela, researcher at Soul City iInstitute and ,Diageo SA’s Corporate Relations Director Sibani Mngadi.

Mngadi says a recent study conducted in Mpumalanga and Tshwane indicates that young people are heavily exposed to alcohol advertising which encourages bad drinking habits.

Because in South Africa we are generally a drinking country, the norms around drinking are just generally welcomed, we drink for fun, when we are mourning. So for them, it is one of those, that you cannot have fun without it and marketing generally promotes that.

Lebohang Letsela, researcher at Soul City institute

Mngadi says the issue requires a more holistic approach.

Lets take the issue of youth that has been spoken about, we agreed that we need to make sure that people below the age of 18 are not exposed to alcohol advertising. The other measure proposed is that for anyone visiting a bottle store, those people need to declare or give their ID's to confirm that they are above the legal drinking age.

Sibani Mngadi, Diageo SA’s Corporate Relations Director

Those are the things that will work properly instead of just cutting out one element which we think will have quite a significant impact on the South African economy. [A study] confirms that this deal will lead to 1 533 jobs lost to the industry, R 1.2 billion total loss to the economy.

Sibani Mngadi, Diageo SA’s Corporate Relations Director

Click on the link below to listen to the full discussion....


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