New Alcohol Unit Reduction pledge

Through the launch of a new collective pledge on alcohol, a billion units of alcohol will be shed by the alcohol industry through an ambitious plan to help customers drink within guidelines, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley announced today.

Companies have committed to a wide range of innovative and creative ways of helping their customers to drink within the guidelines. This includes improving consumer choice by lowering the strength of existing brands, introducing new lower strength products, nudging people towards smaller sizes and other marketing and promotional activity to encourage their customers to switch to lower unit drinks rather than similar drinks with a higher unit content.

Estimates suggest that in a decade, removing one billion units from sales would result in almost 1,000 fewer alcohol related deaths per year; thousands of fewer hospital admissions and alcohol related crimes, as well as substantial savings to health services and crime costs each year. A full press release is available.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said:

“The Responsibility Deal shows what can be achieved for individuals and families when we work together with industry. We know it is an ambitious challenge to work in this way but our successes so far clearly demonstrate it works. We will work hard to engage even more businesses and get bigger results.

“Cutting alcohol by a billion units will help more people drink sensibly and within the guidelines. This pledge forms a key part of the shared responsibility we will encourage as part of the alcohol strategy.”

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