Proposed measures in the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill 2015 announcedWednesday, 04 February 2015
On Wednesday 3 February, the Government announced that it has agreed a range of measures designed to tackle alcohol misuse in Ireland.
It is reported that the key elements in the proposed Public Health (Alcohol) Bill 2015 (the “Bill”) are as follows:
- provisions to prevent the sale of cheap alcohol by using a minimum pricing unit. The minimum pricing unit will make it illegal to sell or advertise for sale alcohol at a price below a set minimum price;
- health labelling and warnings on alcohol products including calories counts;
- new enforcement powers for Environmental Health Officers and Gardaí;
- enforcement of structural separation of alcohol from other products under section 9 of the Intoxicating Liquor Act 2008 which is to be commenced;
- measures to enforce restrictions on the marketing and advertising of alcohol from 2016. It will be illegal to market or advertise alcohol in a manner that is appealing to children; and
- sports sponsorship – there is no ban on sports sponsorship by drinks companies; however, the Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar, has stated that the issue of sports sponsorship would be reviewed in three years.
The proposed Bill is to be published in the coming months and it is expected to become law by the end of the year. The announcement follows on from a government announcement in October 2013 on this same issue, details of which, including more specific information on the proposed measures, are available here.
Once the Bill is published we will gauge the extent to which the announced measures have been incorporated.