Self-regulatory organizations learn about new alcohol framework

  • 16 April 2014
ICC Sustainable development

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) presented the ICC Framework for Responsible Marketing Communications of Alcohol to self-regulatory organizations (SROs) at the annual meeting of the International Council on Advertising Self-Regulation (ICAS) in Amsterdam this month.

ICAS is a body facilitated by the European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA) to provide a forum for information exchange, best practice discussions and communication among nine advertising SROs beyond the 27 in EASA’s European membership. This year’s meeting was hosted by the Dutch SRO Stichting Reclame Code.

The presentation by ICC Senior Policy Executive for the Commission on Marketing and Advertising, Elizabeth Thomas-Raynaud, together with Brett Bivans, Senior Vice President of the International Center of Alcohol Policies, sought to provide SROs with a better understanding of how the Framework can be implemented on a local level.

The talk outlined the impetus for the development of the framework, and explained what the Framework covers with relevant examples on how it could be used to update or develop local rules for responsible alcohol marketing.

“The framework helps interpret and apply the principles to offer more specific guidance on issues such as health and safety, social responsibility and truthfulness in the context of alcohol marketing communications,” said Ms Thomas-Raynaud. “We consider SRO needs and input closely in developing these tools. We trust this framework will help strengthen local codes and in turn the effectiveness of regulation in this area.”

The Framework was welcomed as a positive development by the SROs represented, including El Salvador, Australia, Canada, Mexico, and Colombia as well as those from Europe. Several participants advised ICC of their intention to use the framework to update or develop their codes.

Mr Bivans added: “We are confident that this framework will bolster existing self-regulatory efforts to help industry meet the global commitments of the major alcohol beverage companies. Effective implementation by national level self-regulatory bodies is a critical factor in achieving that goal so we’re keen to take every opportunity to present and explain the ICC framework.”

The Framework was launched in March and has since been distributed by the ICC network of national committees and communicated by ICC marketing and advertising commission members and partner associations.

In addition to the ICAS presentation, the framework was presented to global advertisers at the World Federation of Advertising annual meeting in Australia in March. A Spanish version of the Framework will be launched in May in Mexico and ICC will conduct a seminar on the framework for the members of CONARED, the Latin American alliance of self-regulatory organizations, when they meet on 14-16 May.

ICC has been a major rules-setter in international advertising self-regulation since 1937, when the ICC Commission on Marketing and Advertising issued the first code on advertising. Today, ICC principles serve as the gold standard for most national and sector self-regulation.

Download the ICC Framework for Responsible Marketing Communications of Alcohol