Today (10th June) Eurocare General Assembly expressed its deep concern over developments in France, with regards to loi Evin.
The European Alcohol Policy Alliance, which represents 57 organisations across Europe, is extremely concerned to learn that the loi Evin, one of the world’s most respected public health policies, is under threat by new legislation to be discussed in the French Parliament this week.
The Loi pour la croissance et l’activité, otherwise known as the loi Macron, proposes to strip the Loi Evin of its powers, meaning that for the first time since 1991, France will be unable to protect its children and young people from exposure to influential lifestyle-based alcohol marketing messages.
An amendment to the loi Macron proposes to separate the definition of advertising from information. This would greatly increase the opportunities for alcohol producers to generate indirect publicity and promotion of their products, making enforcement of the loi Evin impossible…
Given the international evidence to indicate exposure to alcohol marketing encourages children to drink more alcohol, and at an earlier age, Eurocare believes this would be a regrettable decision.
The loi Evin has been evaluated by the European Court of Justice as an efficient tool for the prevention of alcohol related risks and it has been deemed compatible with European legislation. This decision was taken considering the grounds of economic liberalism on which the European Union stands via its internal market.
The loi Evin cannot be seen as a threat to the economy, given that it allows for alcohol producers to deliver fair information to potential consumers, based on the quality and contents of their products. However, the marketing of alcohol must be controlled because of the high risks associated with alcohol consumption, including risks to children who are vulnerable to negative impacts of alcohol advertisements.
The loi Evin is seen as a model for health agencies of many European countries and indeed worldwide. Weakening this law would be sending a negative message to all European institutions and citizens concerned by the harms caused by alcohol to individuals, families and communities.
The image used in this articles comes from Paris Match Magzine (2011), this ad is actually banned in France thanks to the loi Evin which don’t allow the association between alcohol,culture, art nor a seductive approach (it has been condemned by the Court in 2013). But this ad will be possible if the producers obtain change to the law.