Estonia planning to limit alcohol advertising and reduce availability

NordAN sent another support letter today addressed to the prime minister of Estonia and several other ministers and party leaders. The Ministry of Social Affairs, with the initiative of Minister of Health and Labour Jevgeni Ossinovski have introduced a bill that aims to cut majority of alcohol advertising and reduce alcohol availability, including banning alcohol sale at petrol stations.

Bill includes following points:

a) Beginning in January 1st 2017, alcohol must be on separate shelves from other stuff in stores.
b) Starting 2018, major food stores need to create separate departments with non-transparent walls; in smaller shops, alcohol may only be sold from behind the counter.
c) Starting 2017, alcohol sales will be banned in stores at gas stations.
d) Local governments will be restored the right to impose additional restrictions to alcohol sales at eateries.
e) It will be prohibited for stores to hold degustation events for alcohol, and eateries will have to go without the so-called happy hours where at certain times alcohol is cheaper of offered two for the price of one.
f) Alcohol ads may only contain regarding the drink its 1) name 2) type 3) name of producer 4) trademark 5) country of origin 6) geographical region 7) ethanol content percentage 8) image of sales package 9) description of characteristics (color, aroma, taste). The information contained in alcohol ad must be presented on single color background, and without sound and visual design elements.
g) Also to be banned is the thus far allowed open air ads of low-alcoholic beverages (strong alcohol is already banned).
h) In TV the allowed time for alcohol ads will be pushed further into the night by one hour to 10 pm.

In its letter NordAN stressed the need for action and urged politicians to adopt these changes “and keep on working with evidence based alcohol policies.”

“Limiting both alcohol marketing and availability are important measures when a country attempts to decrease the level of youth drinking and alcohol related harm in the society. These measures have a strong evidence base and are recommended as the “best-buys” by the World Health Organisation.”

NordAN support letter