About this report
This report constitutes the third review of the implementation of the Beer Pledge and looks back over the whole 2012-2015 period of the Pledge. It represents a snapshot of initiatives carried out by brewers, through associations, companies and broad coalitions, in line with and contributing to, the implementation of the three pillars of the European Beer Pledge – (i) consumer information, (ii) responsible advertising, and (iii) programs to tackle alcohol misuse.
Although some activities are carried out at national level and supported through the national brewers’ associations, others are company activities, conducted either at the national or the global level across a number of the company’s country operations. Readers of this report have the opportunity to see, pillar by pillar, country by country, the reported activities, through short descriptions and key outcomes where available and verified through the external, independent assurance process.
Whilst some activities may cross borders and many others may be applicable to more than one of the three pillars, effort has been made in the main report text to categorise the initiatives clearly and thus also avoid any duplication of reporting. Pillar 3 is also split into four further sub-pillars: (i) Drink driving; (ii) Underage drinking; (iii) Excessive consumption; and (iv) Alcohol and Pregnancy. Over the course of the Pledge’s implementation, the binge drinking sub-pillar was expanded to encapsulate other activities promoting responsible consumption, such as initiatives towards people suffering from alcoholism and workplace-related activities.
An overview table in the Executive Summary seeks to capture, country by country, (sub-)pillar by (sub-)pillar, the activities undertaken, classifying them according to whether they are activities supported by the national brewers’ association or by individual brewing companies, either as single entities, or together with other companies. In this table activities may be marked in more than one box, so as to avoid any misperception, purely on the basis of categorisation, that a certain activity is not being run under a certain pillar.
Information has primarily been collated via the Global Social Responsibility Initiatives (GSRI) database of the Worldwide Brewing Alliance (WBA), supplemented by information and supporting materials provided by, or via, national brewers’ associations and individual companies. Some activities were also filed as commitments to the EU Alcohol and Health Forum and thus subject to scrutiny through the monitoring process that forms part of the European Commission’s compulsory requirements for all parties filing Forum commitments. Additionally, some company activities have also been included based on information provided in the Progress Reports on the Global CEO Commitments made by 12 of the world’s largest drinks companies, including major brewing companies operating in the European Union. It is however to be noted that, due to different reporting periods and scope, data may not necessarily be comparable between the reports.
As in previous reports, KPMG Sustainability has reviewed the information provided and supporting materials in order to provide limited assurance on its content, ensuring that all significant claims within the report be backed up by evidence through a process that encourages rigour in monitoring outputs and outcomes of the initiatives undertaken. KPMG Sustainability’s Independent Assurance Report can be seen at the end of this report.
Completion and publication of the final version of this report was delayed due to uncertainty around the status of the EU Strategy to support Member States in reducing alcohol-related harm and the Alcohol and Health Forum set up by this Strategy. An online version of the report, prior to completion of the assurance process, was therefore published end 2016 on the website http://www.beerwisdom.eu. With greater clarity on the status of the EU Strategy and renewed attempts by the European Commission in 2017 to reinvigorate the Forum, which last met in May 2015, it was therefore decided to publish a final, definitive version of this latest Beer Pledge report, following completion of the independent assurance process.
The information in this third beer pledge report covers the reporting period from 1 January 2012 to 1 December 2015. Due to the above explained delay, initiatives, developments and activities occurring after this period have not been included in this report. However, in the sections ‘about this report’ ‘executive summary’ and ‘introduction’, key developments after 1 December 2015 have been mentioned as we consider these relevant for the reader to understand the broader context.