Responding to a recent MPs’ report calling for a re-think of alcohol guidelines in the UK, the Portman Group – a body representing the alcoholic drinks industry – has proposed ‘re-imagining’ current Department of Health recommendations on maximum weekly alcohol consumption of 21 units into a promotion for ‘your healthful 3-a-day’.
‘We’re just trying to look out for the British public,’ said Dr Simon Greene, a Portman spokesman, ‘weekly limits sound so boring and ‘nanny state’ but our new campaign reflects modern hectic lifestyles. It can even be combined with the five-a-day fruit and veg targets. Why not try a strawberry daiquiri, or ‘get up and go!’ with a breakfast Bloody Mary?’
While the 3-a-day target has been enthusiastically embraced by supermarkets and many consumers, there has been some criticism that the campaign is wilfully misinterpreting government recommendations. ‘We recognise that the 3-a-day message is simplistic,’ said Greene, ‘but in all our ads there is a clear footnote addressing concerns. It is important that the three units a day are from different sources, so three cans of Stella simply wouldn’t cover you.’