Experts developing framework for responsible marketing of alcohol

  • 30 May 2013

Heeding the call of industry to ensure robust rules are well understood and coherently applied across markets, the ICC Commission on Marketing and Advertising is developing a new global framework for responsible marketing communications of alcohol.

An experts’ group will convene at the upcoming commission meetings in New York on 3-4 June to discuss the draft guide, which identifies existing principles from the Consolidated ICC Code and offers interpretation and further guidance to help marketers and self-regulatory authorities. 

“The ICC framework will complement steps already taken by sectoral groups to bolster existing self-regulatory efforts and expand on them in markets where they are lacking,” said Brent Sanders, Chair of the Marketing and Advertising Commission and Associate General Counsel of Microsoft. “While the commission’s work is oriented to rules for broad business interests and not sectoral codes, we agreed that the interpretive instrument proposed would help self-regulatory bodies implement existing ICC Code articles more effectively and coherently across markets.”

“The goal is to increase existing confidence in the self-regulatory approach even further, and ensure that it reaches across all markets,” said Oliver Gray, co-Chair of the ICC experts’ group drafting the framework and Executive Director of the European Advertising Standards Alliance. “This new initiative will do just that and, by building on the global commitments of the major alcohol beverage companies, will demonstrate responsibility via strong and coherent industry rules.”

Development of an ICC framework was initially proposed by the International Center for Alcohol Policies (ICAP) with strong support of the World Federation of Advertisers. The base draft was developed against the background of the ICAP guiding principles. These represent a consensus built and globally committed to by CEOs of 13 major companies representing beer, wine and spirits producers.

ICC has served as the authoritative rule-setter for international advertising since the 1930s, when the first ICC Code on advertising practice was issued. Since then, it has updated and expanded the ICC self-regulatory framework on many occasions to assist companies in marketing their products responsibly and to help self-regulators apply the rules consistently.

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