Tuesday, 27 October 2009


I have always worried about my local paper and it's approach to alcohol. They are very reluctant to give local pubs good publicity. Unless of course we pay for it. When the local rag's advertising sales guy comes round I point out the editors bias but to little effect.

Today I see this headline:


Now, with a partner who used to be a paediatric nurse I would agree that there are some problems with under-age drinking, but the article seems to also be condemning parents who supervise responsible alcohol consumption by way of supervised education. Complete prohibition is surely not the way.
"......it was a misconception that parents believed their children drinking at home was acceptable, just because they could keep an eye on them."
But further more, there is still the suggestion that it is getting worse. This is despite industry statistics that are showing that alcohol consumption is dropping from it's high in 2003-5 and is in fact dropping faster than it has in 6 decades. So why the final paragraph?
"If drinking behaviour remains the same nationally it is likely that the number of alcohol-related admissions to hospitals in England would exceed one million a year in two years’ time."
Follow the link, you may comment on the article if you like.


Barry M said...

It's stuff like that that makes me glad I moved to Germany. The legal age to drink beer is 16 here (you can go into a bar and order one), as far as I am aware. You have to be 18 to drink anything harder or smoke. And of course in the home, in some areas of Germany, it's fine to have a beer with a meal etc...

Of course, Germany is not without it's share of binge drinking problems (or Koma-Saufen, check out that horrific picture!) and although there is much hand-wringing, there seems to be a more balanced approach to it. Beer seems to be blamed less than in the UK or Ireland, and the focus of the problem is on alcopops and mixed drinks. In other words, you'd have to drink too much beer to get into the same awful condition. Or maybe I don't read enough newspapaers :D

Ed said...

I hate this 'ban everything' attitude. The legal drinking age in Britain is five, so why shouldn't parents give their children alcohol? If kids grow up with supervised responsible drinking they might have a more mature attitude by the time they're able to buy it themselves.

Kristy said...

Here's an interesting question - would it be ok to let a child drink Cobra Zero? (or any 0% beer)

Unknown said...

Alcohol free drinks are exactly that. Kids aren't stupid, play the alcohol is too grown up for you to have ANY and kids go mad once they they the streets.

Give them a little of the real thing, on a special occasion under supervision, and point out once they start pretending to be drunk that it's not big or grown up to be drunk and you'll end up with more responsible drinkers once they get out on their own.

If zero alcohol drinks can be used as part of that game then perhaps there is mileage, but watch out for the little darlings understanding a fake when they see one.

Anonymous said...

Tried to post this link to you on Facebook but was told it contained offensive content!



Unknown said...

And washy's link direct which is about Fentiman's Lemonade, a classy soft drink.

Some great bits in it;

"Maine is of course where our Puritanical forefathers went because Britain was not strict enough and it has been said that Puritans are people who are always worried that someone, somewhere might be having fun."

Because Fentiman's drinks are made using traditional methods they have traces of alcohol in them. <0.5%. Some people class this as alcoholic. Balmy.

"To get the same effect as drinking a pint of 4% beer, you'd have to drink 16 bottles"

Brewers Union Local 180 said...

We get the occasional look of horror here at the pub when I mention that Fentimans contains trace amounts of alcohol. And so off they go to Dairy Queen for artery clogging ice cream and high fructose corn syrup fountain sodas.

Brewers Union Local 180 said...

Sorry about the deleted posts. I was in a realm of dubious wifi access and wasn't getting confirmation of my posting. Back here at the pub all is well.