The Commitments were announced on October 9, 2012 on the second day of the international conference Global Actions: Initiatives to Reduce Harmful Drinking. Through the Commitments, the signatory companies are demonstrating their commitment to supporting balanced initiatives that are linked to their core business functions and those that address wider social and public health issues, relying on initiatives that are evidence based, culturally sensitive, and collaborative. They also support the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Global Strategy to Reduce Harmful Use of Alcohol and welcome the positive role it identifies for producers, distributers, marketers, and sellers of beer, wine, and spirits.
We have strived to ensure that all the information given is accurate, complete, and sufficiently detailed to allow readers to make a fair assessment of our performance in 2015. The Report aims to provide a balanced view, covering positive achievements as well as areas that require improvement or have taken longer than anticipated to achieve, bearing in mind that the Commitments cover a five-year period. We have engaged KPMG Sustainability to review this report and provide limited assurance as outlined in their assurance report (page 35).
We believe that collaboration is a basic tenet critical to success. The vast majority of our reported actions are carried out in partnership with industry colleagues and with stakeholders in civil society organizations, NGOs, governments, and the public health community. The data in this report captures not only the efforts of individual companies in the markets where they are commercially active, but also those led through the collective industry actions of IARD, trade associations, social aspects organizations (SAOs), and other third-party organizations and partners. In the context of the Commitments, an SAO is an organization specifically designed to promote responsible drinking and provide information to the public and consumers.
As with the 2014 report, IARD acted as a data collection hub for trade associations and SAOs across the globe. More than 75 organizations from 46 countries contributed to this report and collaborate with signatories to collectively implement the Commitments. Data collected by IARD was reported to Accenture Strategy as part of the reporting and validation process.
The Commitments embody an ambitious program of actions over a five-year period (2013-2017), which we hope will make a real contribution towards the global target set by the world’s governments of “at least a 10% relative reduction in the harmful use of alcohol” by 2025.
These Commitments demonstrate our united pledge as leading alcohol producers to build on our longstanding efforts to reduce harmful drinking. They were specifically designed to support the WHO Global Strategy to Reduce the Harmful Use of Alcohol and the UN Political Declarations on Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs).
As global producers of beer, wine, and spirits, we recognize that the harmful use of alcohol has a serious effect on public health and is a risk factor for NCDs. We are concerned about individuals who abuse alcohol and the negative impact this behavior has on them, their families, and society. Furthermore, we take seriously the important, positive role Member States have identified for producers, distributors, marketers, and sellers of beer, wine, and spirits in enhancing global action on this important issue.
The CEO signatories of our companies have committed to undertaking targeted efforts that focus on five key areas: Reducing underage drinking, Strengthening and expanding marketing codes of practice, Providing consumer information and responsible product innovation, Reducing drinking and driving, and Enlisting the support of retailers to reduce harmful drinking.
As signatories to the Commitments, we are individually and collectively committed to tackling harmful drinking and promoting responsible decisions about drinking or not drinking in the many countries where we are commercially active. We do this by promoting policy dialogue, assessing evidence, supporting programs, and seeking local solutions to the particular issues around harmful drinking in each country. But we know that we cannot do it alone. Only by working together with a broad range of stakeholders will we achieve our targets for 2017, a collective approach embodied in the Commitments themselves. We remain committed to working with local, national, and international stakeholders to combat the harmful use of alcohol, building on the efforts outlined in this report.