Diaper ads and alcohol policy

When you had your first child, didn’t you notice how heavily Pampers was advertising everywhere? Special editions of magazines addressed issues that new parents should be aware of during the first year of having a baby. Afterwards, you might not notice these anymore. You no longer belong to the target group. Even so, Pampers is still very active because every year thousands of people become parents for the first time.

It’s pretty much the same with politics and politicians. Well, sort of. And in that perspective, we have to be the Pampers in this picture. We probably feel that alcohol policy and its political discussion is somewhere in its teens, right? In some cases in its adulthood, in the Nordic countries, of course. We have gone through certain phases, shown the evidence, and there is no need to go back to the “diapers”. Or is it still?

The political field is ever-changing, and with every election, there are those “first-time parents” who need to discover the things that others don’t think about anymore.

New faces in politics
For example, after Norway’s Parliament 
election in 2021, out of the 169 parliamentarians, 67 are new. After the previous parliamentary election in 2017, there were 68 new faces. Whether we think of them as “first-time parents” or political toddlers themselves, they will discover new topics that they haven’t thought of before. A fresh restart again.

There will be different elections in 2022 as well—parliamentary elections in Latvia, county council elections in Finland and general elections in Sweden. 

The issue of alcohol policy plays a role in the politics of all of our countries. And it always has. This is partly because new governments and parliaments are interested in rediscovering the issue. It could mean both positive and negative. 

Hundred years ago, in 1922, alcohol was a big issue as well. Since that year, even though Prohibition was still ongoing in Iceland, wine was made legal. A referendum in 1922 in Sweden rejected an attempt to enforce total prohibition. The Estonian Temperance Union was formed in 1922. In Lithuania, alcohol sales were prohibited on certain state and religious holidays and allowed on Sundays, but only after the church services, also starting from 1922. Norway´s Vinmonopolet (The Wine Monopoly) was founded in 1922. 

How will the year 2022 remain in history? Of course, we can build on the experiences from the past, but we will also start over again in some ways. Relaunch the Pampers ads!

Lauri Beekmann
Executive director, NordAN