Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Alcohol Recruitment

Alcohol companies deliberately recruit young people into drinking their product – that's what they do, as Bacardi CEO Seamus McBride specifically attests to on BBC's The Bottom Line (02 Nov 2010):

"My first thought is, 'who are going to be the target group to recruit the new generation of drinkers for our global brands?' We generally focus on legal drinking ages (because that changes by country), and then, 'how are we going to introduce 23, 24, 25, 30-year olds to our spirit brands?' Now they consume media, communication very differently to when we were younger…, so we need people who are open to, expert at, both inside and outside the company, on digital work, social networks, on events, on sponsorship, on celebrity, and that kind of thing."

"We focus on, let's say, 25 to 30 year olds because that's the age when boys become men, girls become women, and they develop their preferences."

"One of the things we want to do is revitalise the rum market. So we try to attract 25 to 30 year olds into the rum market through the brand Bacardi. So we will portray people in our advertising people who are 25 to 30 because they will recognise themselves in that."

"We have 25 year olds, we have 30 year olds in our businesses around the world because those people understand the trend, they understand what 25 year olds think."

What chance do youth have against this?

Liquor companies will never voluntarily inform on the harm their product does.

But the information provided on what a product does needs to reflect the whole balance of what that product does, not just the fun part. Alcohol companies in the current capitalist ethos will not work to provide this. We need a system that's ethos isn't just the pursuit of money regardless of harm, but the pursuit of fulfilment (for all) without harm (to any).

(The Bottom Line, 02 Nov 2010 -


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