Drink Driving

Utilising non-alcoholic beer to tackle drink driving

In some countries, non-alcoholic beer represents an important share of the beer market, reaching over ten percent of the local beer market in Spain for example, whilst in other countries it is a smaller but growing market. With this growing consumer interest, investments have been made to innovate and produce a wider range of quality nonalcoholic beer styles. This also offers a clear opportunity to provide a positive alternative for consumers who wish to consume beer, but not to drink alcohol before driving. Such is the success of these products that they can now be found on tap at motorway service stations, whilst they are increasingly used in effective campaigns to reduce drink driving.

Making non-alcoholic beer the positive choice for beer consumers wishing to drive


The first high-profile, long-running campaign in the EU utilising non-alcoholic beer to tackle drink driving was in Spain and now continues to run in its latest guise. It is a national campaign, run every year since 2000 by Cerveceros de Espana, in co-operation with the National Traffic Authority (DGT), funded and supported by 16 different stakeholders (CNAE, AOP, RACC, Asociación Española de Carreteras, ADA, RACE, CEA, Stop Accidentes, Rotary International, Fesvial, FEHR, Aesleme, Aspaym, Aevecar, Pons Fundación, FEMP).


The creativity of the campaign is characterised by the use of positive and educational message to the public in general, and young adults in particular, without using repression. The campaign message is clear that the road demands alcohol not be consumed when taking the car, whilst non-alcoholic beer is an option for those who wish to consume beer. In 2010 the campaign became part of the European Road Safety Charter and was subsequently awarded the Road Safety Medal of Merit by the National Government because of its contribution to road safety awareness and education (road fatalities in Spain hadk reduced by 2015 to the level recorded in 1961).


In 2013 the logo was updated with a fresher image and more direct message: “On the road, non-alcoholic beer” and the campaign had two main elements: the Bus Roadshow and Street action. During more than two months a “customised” bus toured some of the main cities of Spain, serving as a traveling billboard, with the interior adapted so visitors could learn about the incompatibility of alcohol and driving, through educational materials, information panels, merchandising (leaflets and non-alcoholic beer) and interactive media. A digital media creativity competition, where 10 GPS and non-alcoholic beer could be won, also invited people to send a photo of something curious they have in their cars, linking to the idea that inside the car you can have anything except alcohol. The bus travelled over 5,500 km in 2013 and received over 8000 visits during the summer of 2013, with over 300 radio spots also running across the country. On 14 August 2013, the busiest day on the roads, an action was also run in petrol stations, based on an exchange of two non-alcoholic beers for any other object that consumers had in the cars that they could live without. The drink was offered together with some leaflets containing awareness messages in 34 points in 7 cities in Spain (Madrid, Barcelona, Sevilla, Zaragoza, A Coruña, Sta. Cruz de Tenerife and Malaga). Furthermore, 2000 direct messages were launched on smartphones in restaurants and service areas through the biggest social network, Foursquare. In 2013 the campaign was covered in 139 articles in offline, online and blog media, whilst there were 44 impacts across social media.


In 2014, a crew of Harley Davidson Riders then became the main ambassadors of the campaign, with the SIN Riders’ actions further increased in 2015. In order to impact consumers in a direct way, the SIN Riders rode more than 6,000 km and stopped in more than 50 cities countrywide in the summer of 2015, when road travel increases. During this summer tour, motorcycle gatherings were organised, involving local riders in events with live music. The SIN riders approached consumers with awareness messages and information about non-alcoholic beer. To generate coverage during the road trips, press presentations were organised in the main Spanish cities, with a kickoff press conference in Madrid.The riders and their motorbikes joined public local institutions in symbolic outdoor venues in each city. The media campaign was supported by a digital campaign on YouTube, whilst a website (http://www.sinriders.com) was created where the SIN Riders explained their adventures and invited drivers, associations and motorcycle clubs to join them. This site has been a very useful channel to communicate the campaign values in an appealing way through video blogs, routes and advice. Profiles in Facebook, Twitter and Youtube were opened to spread the messages and consolidate the target audiences.

SIN Riders  SIN Riders2


The campaign of the Spanish Brewers was presented at a joint ETSC – Spanish Confederation of Driving Schools (CNAE) workshop at the Spanish Representation of the European Commission in Madrid. This was the second national workshop of the SMART project, a three-year partnership between The Brewers of Europe and the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC).


An awareness campaign was also run in 2015 by Athenian Brewery to inform Greek drivers about responsible alcohol consumption. It involved distribution of non-alcohol beers and information leaflets with everyday tips about moderate alcohol consumption on the streets of Athens & Thessaloniki. The activity was carried out in collaboration with VimaFM (a popular news radio station). In July 2015, the message reached approximately 100,000 drivers.

Athenian Brewery  Athenian Brewery

Partnering with the national police authorities in the Czech Republic and Slovakia to promote non-alcoholic beer

Czech Republic

Building on an initiative of the Czech Beer and Malt Association (CBMA) started in 2011 in partnership with the Czech Police to promote non-alcoholic beer to drivers who wish to drink beer but must not drink and drive, a new website was launched in June 2012 – http://www.ridimpijunealkopivo.cz. In the summer of 2012, 10 promotional activities were run at festivals across the Czech Republic and 146 promo-days organised, with over 5500 drivers contacted, more than 5000 single-use alcohol breath tests with the project logo distributed and 5300 samples of non-alcoholic beer handed out. Research presented in October 2012 showed that 79% of Czech people questioned said that they consume non-alcoholic beer before or whilst driving once a week to once a month..

Czech Republic

In 2013, waves of controls were conducted during the Easter holidays and during the summer, with over 6,000 drivers checked in 14 regions across the country. The summer festival outreach covered 12 festivals and addressed more than 3,300 participants. In 2014, over 5000 single-use alcohol breath tests with the project logo were again distributed and the project’s tent visited by more than 10,000 people as 16 promotional activities were held at various summer festivals. During 2014 there were 199 promo-days organised along with the Czech Police and 7,290 drivers pulled over for alcohol controls, with drivers subsequently receiving single-use, alcohol breath testers and samples of the N/A beer. Between 2011 and the end of 2014, more than 34,000 persons were approached by the project, with a further 13,765 people actively engaged by the project in 2015.

ridim piju nealko pivo


A similar concept was launched in 2012 by the Slovak Beer and Malt Association (SBMA) at the “Responsibility Day”, an awareness activity that aims to inform the public about alcohol abuse and its consequences, and demonstrate the ways of prevention. It is an annual effort organised in cooperation with the Public Health Authority of the Slovak Republic (PHASR), the Police Headquarters of the Slovak Republic, the Road Traffic Safety Department of the Ministry of Transport, Construction and Regional Development of the Slovak Republic (BECEP). The project was extended with a “Don´t drink and drive campaign” in 2013, which included a press launch in July at the premises of the Headquarters of the Slovak Police. Breath tests were carried out in 36 towns, including in Bratislava where police patrols on the roads handed out non-alcoholic beer. In total information materials were distributed to over 1,500 people and 2,775 drivers were stopped for alcohol tests


In 2014, the campaign was again relaunched in July at the headquarters of the Slovak Police, with police forces going on to conduct 18 patrols on the roads in 8 regional towns – Bratislava, Žilina, Banská Bystrica, Košice, Prešov, Trnava, Nitra and Trenín – handing out non-alcoholic beer and factsheets. With support from the national cycling coordinator and the Opribike project, an event took place on the river bank in Bratislava, with a presentation of the cyclists’ code including a specific focus on responsible alcohol consumption and non-alcoholic beer once again distributed alongside the information materials.


In 2015, police patrols focused especially on “young” drivers with just five years of driving experience – a group of drivers responsible for one sixth of all traffic accidents in Slovakia during first seven months of the year 2015. Of the 507 drivers checked by police in 8 regional towns, two of them were under the influence of alcohol. Whilst the campaign included the ongoing distribution of alcohol breath testers and non-alcoholic beer, a new element to the initiative was the participation of restaurants and pubs. They participated by placing a warning “When I am going to drink alcohol, my car stays at home” and distributing more than 6000 alcohol breath testers from September 2015 to January 2016.

headquarters of the Slovak Police  headquarters of the Slovak Police  alcohol breath testers

Partnering with driving schools in Slovenia to promote non-alcoholic beer

Meanwhile, in Slovenia the Laško brewery has cooperated with a regional driving school for some years, utilising Laško Malt, a non-alcoholic brand. With the driving school, they did events where people could drive cars in different conditions, including under the influence of alcohol. The mission of “Drive Safely with Lasko Malt” was to raise the awareness that drink driving is dangerous and that this is an appropriate drink for them. The focus was especially on young drivers, with the warning that many car accidents are caused by drivers under the influence of alcohol, and the clear message: “Do not drink and drive”. The cooperation with the driving school also involved an advertising agency producing above-the-line and below-the-line materials (Facebook, PR, branding materials).

Introducing non-alcoholic beer in the Netherlands and Belgium to existing designated driver campaigns


In the Netherlands, the brewing sector has for many years been supporting the pan-industry designated driver BOB campaign of the Dutch Traffic Safety Association, more details of which can be seen later in this report. However, in addition, Nederlandse Brouwers since 2013 has paid special attention to the SportBob initiative, supporting this with the provision of alcohol free beers for sports clubs so that, post-match, players can still enjoy a beer before taking the wheel of the car. Nederlandse Brouwers has also shared best practise amongst members of how alcohol free beer can be more readily available at events. In Belgium, where the BOB designated driver campaign is also ever present, ABInBev has since 2013 been running a responsible drinking campaign (“Drink 0.0 Blaas 0.0”) that also promotes alcohol-free beer. In the summer of 2013, to stimulate and educate customers on the “don’t drink and drive” message Hoegaarden 0.0% ABV beer was offered at “after work” terraces, whilst Hoegaarden Rosé 0.0 was promoted at cinema drive-ins.

BOB designated driver campaign  BOB designated driver campaign

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